As an aerospace and defense supplier, you know that compliance with various regulations are paramount when it comes to staying successful and in business. Remaining registered by the Directorate of Defense Trade Controls and compliant is extremely important though. Failure to do so could result in expensive penalties, or even time in prison. This blog will go over the basics of ITAR, and what you need to do to become compliant.
What is ITAR Compliance?
The acronym ITAR stands for International Traffic in Arms Regulations. ITAR is a set of control regulations pertaining to the export and import of defense articles, services and technology. Defense articles could be something like military firearms, to night vision technology, or even space technology. These items are all listed on the United States Munitions List, or USML.
The goal of ITAR compliance certification is to make sure that proprietary technology or equipment belonging to the U.S. Military does not make its way into the hands of a foreign national for security reasons. Generally speaking, only U.S. citizens are allowed to work on or access items on the USML, but there are some exemptions. People that have been found guilty of violating ITAR and sharing military technology with foreign countries have been sentenced to lengthy periods in federal prison.
What are the steps to become ITAR compliant?
Companies can reach ITAR compliance by registering with the State Department’s Directorate of Defense Trade Controls. After that, make sure your company is meets ITAR compliance requirements with ITAR’s rules and license products you plan to export. With ITAR compliance like a DCAA audit or AS9100 certification, you essentially just have to follow import and export law.
An ERP system like Epicor will help your business have the organization required to comply with trade law when it comes to licensing products and record keeping. It will also ensure you have procedures in place to maintain ITAR compliance.
ITAR Compliance Checklist
Navigating the intricate landscape of International Traffic in Arms Regulations (ITAR) requirements is a critical responsibility for any aerospace and defense company. ITAR sets forth stringent guidelines for managing sensitive data related to defense and military technologies, ensuring that such information does not fall into unauthorized hands.
To comply with ITAR, companies must adhere to a series of specific steps and procedures designed to protect this sensitive data. This checklist serves as a comprehensive guide to help your company meet ITAR requirements effectively, safeguarding both your business operations and the national security interests of the United States. It covers everything from registration to handling sensitive data, providing a clear pathway to robust ITAR compliance.
1. Understand ITAR Regulations
- Familiarize yourself with the International Traffic in Arms Regulations (ITAR) and United States Munitions List (USML).
- Regularly review updates to ITAR and USML for any changes in regulations.
2. Register with the Directorate of Defense Trade Controls (DDTC)
- Ensure your company is registered with the State Department's DDTC.
- Keep track of the registration renewal dates to maintain compliance.
3. Classify Your Products, Services, and Technology
- Determine if your products, services, or technology fall under the USML categories.
- Seek expert legal consultation if necessary for accurate classification.
4. Implement Internal Compliance Procedures
- Develop and document comprehensive ITAR compliance procedures.
- Include processes for handling, storing, and transmitting ITAR-controlled items.
5. Employee ITAR Compliance Training and Awareness
- Conduct regular training sessions for employees on ITAR compliance.
- Ensure all employees, especially those handling ITAR-controlled items, understand their responsibilities and the consequences of non-compliance.
6. Licensing and Authorization
- Obtain the necessary licenses for exporting ITAR-controlled items.
- Understand the exemptions and ensure proper documentation for the same.
7. Manage Access to Controlled Information and Products
- Restrict access to ITAR-controlled items to U.S. persons unless authorized.
- Implement security measures to prevent unauthorized access.
8. Monitor and Audit Compliance
- Regularly audit internal processes to ensure adherence to ITAR regulations.
- Address any compliance issues or gaps immediately upon discovery.
9. Maintain Accurate Record Keeping
- Keep detailed records of all ITAR-related activities, including training, licenses, and internal ITAR compliance audits.
- Store records safely and securely, as required by ITAR.
10. Implement an ITAR-Compliant ERP System
- Utilize an ERP system like Epicor to organize and manage ITAR compliance data.
- Ensure the ERP system can track and record ITAR-related transactions and activities.
11. Partner with ITAR-Compliant Partners and Suppliers
- Ensure that your supply chain and business partners are also ITAR compliant.
- Regularly review and verify the compliance status of partners and suppliers.
12. Stay Informed and Seek Expert Assistance
- Keep abreast of any changes or updates in ITAR regulations.
- Engage with ITAR compliance experts or legal advisors for guidance and clarification.
13. Report Violations Promptly
- Establish a process for reporting potential ITAR violations internally.
- Report any actual violations to the appropriate authorities immediately.
Following this checklist will help ensure that your aerospace and defense company remains compliant with ITAR regulations, avoiding the severe consequences of non-compliance. Regular review and updates of your compliance practices are essential to adapt to any changes in the regulatory environment.
How can Cre8tive Technology help with ITAR compliance?
Cre8tive Technology and Design itself is ITAR compliant, so we know what it takes to make sure your company follows International Traffic in Arms Regulations as well. Our team of experts will be happy to help you with an ERP solution that keeps your ITAR compliant. Contact one of our knowledgeable experts today.