Why should US Companies bother with the ITAR EAR Rules?
The U.S. government, in an attempt to keep sensitive information out of the hands of terrorists and countries who want an advantage against US interests, developed the ITAR – International Traffic in Arms Regulations controlled by the DDTC – Directorate of Defense Trade Controls and EAR – Export Administration Regulations controlled by the BIS – Bureau of Industry and Security.
These regulations makes it mandatory for businesses that manufacture and service electronic communications gear, armor, firearms, radios and other related items, to register with the federal government. While this system is a great way to protect sensitive information, the regulations have proven to be a bit confusing for some business owners.
The only way to find out if a business is included in the regulations is to read up on them in detail. Here are some of the things a business needs to consider when trying to navigate their way through the ITAR EAR Rules.
Did The Product Start Out in the Military?
When trying to figure out whether or not a business has to comply with the ITAR EAR Rules, the business owner will need to think about where their product originated. If the system started out as a government funded and designed product, then the business will have to comply with these regulations. There are a variety of products in the world of navigation, computer security and weaponry that all started as government products.
Getting Familiar With the ITAR EAR Rules and Lists
Another helpful way to determine if a business needs to comply with the ITAR Regulations is by taking a look at the United States Munitions List (USML). If the article is not on the USML it will be on the EAR Commerce Control List (CCL). These lists help to breakdown the products that are susceptible to this regulation.
Obtaining a copy of this list will make it much easier on a business owner to figure out what they need to do. The USML list contains 21 categories and the CCL contains 9 categories. Everything made or serviced in the USA is included in these lists – both commercial and defense related things.
It Gets a Bit Tricky For Software Developers
Among the most confusing parts of the ITAR EAR Rules is the stipulations that it has for software development companies. The regulations states that if the software has been modified for military use, then the company that produced it will have to comply with the regulations.
By taking the time to look over the USML and CCL lists and reviewing the guidelines in the ITAR EAR Rules, business owners will be able to find out what they are obligated to do. Hiring a consultant like CVG Strategy can speed up this compliance effort and ensure full conformance with the laws and regulations!