Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)

Program Name

Intelligence Studies

Capstone Instructor

Dr. Curtis Brandt Smith


Sexual espionage is a practice that has been well documented throughout history as an effective means of collecting human intelligence, which continues to produce impressive results despite the fact that the tenets of this method are now widely known. This study seeks to explain this phenomenon by demonstrating a correlation between high sensation seeking individuals and the tendency to seek out and engage in adrenaline-producing activities, which can oftentimes include high-risk sexual behaviors. A specific focus was placed upon the prevalent nature of the high sensation seeking personality trait within Special Operations communities, and how this increases the susceptibility of these organizations to honey trap operations. A qualitative case study was conducted in order to explain why these individuals are inherently more vulnerable to sexual espionage tactics, and this information was then utilized to generate countermeasures that can assist in reducing the vulnerability of American SOF personnel. The complex threat environment that the United States is currently facing will necessitate a full-scale approach to vi intelligence collection, and the benefits of engaging in sexual espionage should not be overlooked or underestimated; therefore, targeting recommendations have also been provided as a means of exploiting this similar tendency in foreign SOF organizations.



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