Understanding Export and Import Restrictions

Export Control Laws Overview

“Export Control Laws” refers to laws and regulations that prohibit or restrict the unlicensed “export” of certain goods and technologies (e.g., information, software) to foreign entities.  The U.S. government has controlled exports of certain goods and technology for national security reasons since the 1940s.  Today, the U.S. Departments of Commerce and State each play a role in enforcing complex sets of export control regulations  These regulations apply to all activities at Yale, not just research.

Information or goods do not need to leave the U.S. for export control laws to apply.  These laws also apply to transfers of information to foreign persons within the U.S. (e.g., a foreign citizen working or studying at Yale), referred to as “deemed exports.”  The deemed export regulations are particularly concerning for universities like Yale because university personnel conduct research and teach courses that may involve controlled technology and they enroll and employ many foreign nationals.  You should be generally aware of export regulations and consider whether your activities, particularly research and travel, might implicate those regulations.

Anytime a person leaves the U.S. to travel to another country, they are engaging in export activity.  Certain common items, such as laptops, tablets, smart phones, PDAs and the like, are regulated by U.S. export control laws.  All international travelers should be aware of the export (and import) restrictions of both the U.S. and any destination countries before traveling.

Click on the menus on the right for more information about export controls and how they may apply to Researchers, International Travelers, and use of Cloud Computing services.