The Russian acronym for the Russian Federation’s principal signals intelligence organization, Federalnoie Agentsvo Pravitelsvennoi Sviazi i Informatsi (Federal Agency for Government Information and Communications), formerly the KGB’s Eighth Chief Directorate. Western knowledge of this highly secret agency is largely based on information supplied by a defector, Viktor Sheymov, who was exfiltrated from the Soviet Union in 1980. He had joined the unit in 1971 and his defection was not disclosed until 1992.
FAPSI’s two principal overseas intercept bases, at Lourdes in Cuba and at Cam Ranh Bay in Vietnam, were closed in December 2001 and February 2002, respectively, on grounds of cost. The site at Lourdes had been opened in 1964 and was run jointly by FAPSI’s Third Directorate and the GRU’s Sixth Directorate; it had employed an estimated 1,100 personnel at an annual cost of $300 million.