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How would an organization protect sensitive information from mind-controlled spies?

An organization (call it the Illuminati if you want) is hunting down a vampire. The vampire is capable of controlling and seeing through the eyes of anyone whose blood he has drunk.

He has already used this to learn quite a bit about the organization hunting him.

How can the organization defend itself against this and prevent the vampire from hopelessly compromising the organization before they can find him?

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    $\begingroup$ If it's just the eyes, use audio. The Russians use type writers against hackers, it's not far fetched at all. If one technology is compromised, use another one. You might have to explain this in greater detail though. You might also have to look into disinformation. I'm guessing you're mostly concerned with the vampire not learning where, when and how the organization will strike? I think clarification is needed. What can and can't the vampire do and what do you want to protect exactly? $\endgroup$ – Raditz_35 Sep 14 at 17:17
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    $\begingroup$ Does the mind control have a tell? Does it wear off? How complete is it? Do the victims respond to the image of the vampire (neural tell?) Do they have loyalty, or just have to obey without question? Are the victims aware they are controlled, or do they just suddenly start obeying unseen directions? Does the vampire directly control them (robots), or does he get their loyalty/servitude? $\endgroup$ – DWKraus Sep 14 at 17:32
  • $\begingroup$ Does the vampire have access to the memories of those it controls? If not, daily code words/responses would identify compromised agents, at which point what you have is a useful route to send disinformation. $\endgroup$ – jdunlop Sep 14 at 21:09
  • $\begingroup$ @jdunlop It's not like a puppet master more like a slave servant. They have their own independent thought. But must obey the vampire and cannot even think of doing anything disloyal to him. $\endgroup$ – Bryan McClure Sep 14 at 21:11
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    $\begingroup$ How much blood does he need to drink and does the drinking leave scars? How long do these scars last? If every operative has to scan his neck every day with a video-camera, to check for scars, it should be pretty safe? $\endgroup$ – Falco Sep 15 at 9:39
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Disinformation

The organization is full of disinformation. Persons go through routines and draft reports that may or may not fall under interests of this society. Some of the stuff is big stuff - giant conspiracies, ancient monster gods, worldbending threats; all fake. Mostly fake. Actually mostly not fake. Or is it? The vampire is baffled at the apparent scope of what this organization does and the resources it has at its disposal, and apparent contradictions that are taken as a matter of course. It is awed and cowed at the secret world this organization concerns itself with managing.

The vampire spy is not the only infiltrator. This strategy works against all of them. The employees themselves do not all know what is real and what is invented. The vampire can see others being shocked and skeptical at some things that are (partly) revealed in dead earnest. Can this stuff be real? Is there a way to check? A safe way?

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The operatives of the organization are expendables, and always get orders or transmit information via a middle medium: something like a letter left in a given place or the like.

In this way the vampire can only chase down the small fry, not the big ones.

A similar approach was used for example by the spy network set up by the USSR in USA (and most likely by any country in other countries).

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Your organisation should be decentralised, comprised of small isolated cells, and, if anonymity is possible, rely on hired hands a lot.

The chain of command is necessary, but it should be set up in such a way as to prevent the vampire from going up the chain. For example, each level should never communicate directly with the other. Depending on your tech level it can be letters, emails, or some other signal system that allows for complete anonymity. If you want maximum security, you have to use disposable recruiters at the early stages and you might need to kill cell members if one of them gets promoted to the higher level.

Break each level into small independent cells that do not communicate with each other and have no way to identify each other. If one of the cell members is captured by the vampire, only their cell is compromised while the organisation itself stays safe. Give cells a lot of freedom so your organisation does not create patterns of behaviour that a vampire can track.

If your world allows anonymity to employers, use as many hired hands for small inconspicuous tasks as you can. Again, make sure that you do not create any noticeable patterns. Do not deliver all your mail to the same address.

Also, make sure that your organisation has some talented bookkeepers. Money flow is the easiest way to track big organisations no matter how secret they are. If you want to succeed you need to hide your money really well.

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Teams

All agents work in pairs. The vampire can't control both agents at once. Orders are in two parts and sent to the agents separately. Reports have to be submitted at the same time by both agents. If something happens to one agent, the agent is stood down until a replacement can be found.

Cells

The agents are arranged in cells and only know their direct controller. They are isolated from operational data and are only told what they need to complete their task. The direct controller only knows their direct controller and so on. The vampire has to work their way up the chain of command. Should someone compromised be detected, the above controller can vanish cutting the branch loose.

Anonymity

The agents don't actually know their boss is. They communicate via email or phone and have never actually met. The vampire cannot extract information from agents because they don't know anything useful.

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  • $\begingroup$ If everyone knows there superior it is too easy for the vampire to work their way up the chain. $\endgroup$ – Otkin Sep 15 at 17:01
  • $\begingroup$ Yes but you have to work up the chain. You can't go straight to the head. If detected, the chain can be severed by removing a link stopping the "infection" $\endgroup$ – Thorne Sep 15 at 23:54
  • $\begingroup$ What I meant is that if each level knows their direct supervisor there is nothing to stop vampire from going all the way from the bottom to the very top. The vampire just needs to go through all the levels one by one. However, I am not quite sure if that is what you meant. Cells and Anonymity sections contradict each other in this regard. Could you clarify this point in your answer? $\endgroup$ – Otkin Sep 16 at 2:53
  • $\begingroup$ Terrorists are organized in cells like this and yes the vampire could/would have to go through each level but the vampire needs to take each link of the chain undetected. It's to slow the task of infiltration down and allow the infiltration to be easily removed once detected. $\endgroup$ – Thorne Sep 16 at 5:04
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Poison their own blood

Not sure what vampire type you're using, but it should be possible to develop an injectable or drinkable medication/agent/chemical/something that makes bad things happen to the vampire if he tries to drink someone. Some ideas for injection:

  • Millions of gold-plated (for biocompatibility) silver particles
  • Millions of nano-scale crusifixes
  • Holy water saline solution

Alternatively

  • Have members be permanently drunk to increase BAC levels to something that an undead can't handle
  • Use synthetic blood
  • Infuse own blood with blood from many donors, might cause kaleidoscope problems for vampire

Your conspiracy members could also move their base to somewhere with permanent (or multi-month) sunlight like the north or south pole.

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Anyone who gets their blood drunk gets paid sick leave until the guy is captured. Bring in new blood (ha) to finish the case.

Seriously once you've figured out that bites mean compromised - kick them off the squad.

If i was at work and some crazy bit me and sucked my blood I'd feel I deserved a month off. I'd need time for blood tests anyway, make sure I didnt get hepatitis or HIV or something.

Mandatory physical on return from a mission to make sure all bites are detected.

(Edited, I'd focused more on the see through eyes part. But the mind controlling part is more important.)

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    $\begingroup$ Given the response to my comment, I don't know that this would work, depending on the speed at which the control occurs. If it's instantaneous/near instantaneous, the new servant of the vampire would have every reason to a) conceal the bite, and b) continue working as if nothing had happened. Assuming the bite isn't too obvious, how would you know if a person was compromised? $\endgroup$ – jdunlop Sep 14 at 21:34
  • $\begingroup$ Who's to say they need to get bit? The vamp just has to drink their blood. How much blood is needed? Could getting punched in the nose and dripping blood be enough? A syringe while unconscious from being drunk or drugged? A blood sample from a compromised doctor? A shaving cut? $\endgroup$ – Thorne Sep 15 at 2:58
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    $\begingroup$ @Thorne Those are some good clarifying questions that should probably be asked to the question author. Although it would be more believable if they need to get bitten for this to work (e.g. biting them injects something, probably undetectable, into their blood which is controlled by the vampire, thus also allowing the vampire to control them, as opposed to "because vampires"). $\endgroup$ – NotThatGuy Sep 15 at 4:13
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Anyone entering your super secret base must stay in a quarantine cell for how ever long it takes for the mind control to stop working. Only then are they allowed in and can see the secret information. I expect people would quickly decide to limit their visits and decide they don't really need to see those updated secret plans (depending how long they have to wait). This would help against people inadvertently reveling the secret information to other non-vampire people.

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The answer lies in whether the organization was aware of the abilities of the vampire before he has access to members of the organization. If they are, then they can take the precautions suggested in other answers. If they are not, then the organization can be hopelessly compromised before they're even aware that they're under attack. If the vampire's bite confers no disadvantages and just changes the allegiance of the bitten individual, it is the perfect subversion tool.

So, different idea:

The Competition

the Organization has already been thoroughly suborned... by a vampire who's been shaping the organization's behaviour for a century. For obvious reasons, they've not disclosed the complete set of vampiric powers to the organization, but still don't enjoy anyone horning in on their turf.

So while agents below a certain threshold may not be under vampiric control, the instant a big enough fish gets bitten and drops off the Illuminati vampire's network, compromise is detected and actions can be taken.

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The organisation should conduct its meetings in broad day light and ban sunglasses or other forms of eye protection from the list of company approved attire.

Anyone not showing up for the meetings should be considered a suspect and dealt with accordingly.

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