USC Office of Compliance



The Export Administration Regulations (“EAR”) and International Traffic in Arms Regulations (“ITAR”) are two sets of federal export control laws that regulate the distribution to foreign nationals and foreign countries of strategically important products, services and information for reasons of foreign policy and national security.  These regulations apply to actual exports to foreign nationals and countries, and also to disclosures of certain types of data and information to foreign nationals in the United States.
In the research context, EAR and ITAR considerations frequently arise in the following areas and disciplines:

  • Military or Defense Articles and Services
  • High Performance Computing
  • Dual Use Technologies (technologies with both a military and commercial application)
  • Encryption Technology
  • Missiles & Missile Technology
  • Chemical/Biological Weapons
  • Nuclear Technology
  • Select Agents & Toxins
  • Space Technology & Satellites
  • Medical Lasers

The following types of activities are covered by the EAR and ITAR:

  • Participation by foreign national students and university employees in research where the sponsor attempts to restrict either the results of the research or who may be involved in the research on the basis of nationality.
  • Collaboration with overseas researchers or sponsors.
  • Shipping or personally bringing materials, equipment, or supplies to another country. (e.g., laptops, web-enabled cell phones, and other technology containing encryption hardware or software).
  • Transfer of technology, technical data, or source code to a foreign country.
  • Visits by foreign nationals to laboratories where controlled research is being conducted.
  • Receipt of information that cannot be disclosed without permission of another party.
  • Performing proprietary work that involves controlled technology.

Please click on the links to the left for further information on the EAR and ITAR and the types of activities they address, and contact the Office of Compliance if you believe that your research may be covered by export control regulations.