High Risk Country Guidance

High Risk Country Guidance

The University compiles a list of High-Risk Countries from a number of sources, including the University of Colorado Systems Risk Management, the Department of State, the Department of Treasury, and the Federal Bureau of Investigation. The FBI has stated that US travelers are priority targets for cyber-attack and monitoring/surveillance, particularly if they are known to be engaged in classified or proprietary research in a STEM field (science, technology, engineering, or mathematics).

Electronic devices and the information on these devices may be at risk of both physical tampering and cyber-attacks.  In rare circumstances, personal devices and luggage may be subject to involuntary official government review (such as Customs officers temporarily seizing devices).  In other countries, you may need to prepare for limited access to specific websites or applications (apps) such as Canvas, Zoom, Teams, YouTube, Google, Facebook, or Twitter due to international sanctions or unreliable connectivity.

 Be sure to review the Procurement Service Center (PSC) International Travel website to learn more about the university's travel approval process and all high-risk countries identified by the university. 

Export-Control High Risk Countries:

The countries below are subject to broad sanctions and embargoes from the Department of Treasury's Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC).  Travel to these countries will likely require prior authorization from the United States Government:

  • Cuba
  • Iran
  • North Korea
  • Sudan
  • Syria/Syrian Arab Republic
  • Ukraine (Crimean, Donetsk People's Republic, and the Luhansk People's Republic region(s))

The countries below have several entities and individuals on specific Department of Treasury and/or Department of Commerce Restricted and Denied Party lists. Please consult with the UCCS Export Control Officer before traveling to, or other engagement with entities in these countries:

  • Belarus
  • Burma/Myanmar
  • China
  • Russia
  • Venezuela
  • Zimbabwe


Additional recommendations include:

  • Do not take sensitive or private information with you overseas. If at all possible, use a loaner laptop when traveling. Sanitized laptops allow for access to required applications while minimizing any personal or controlled information that is taken abroad. Please see your department IT program to see if there are loaner laptops or other loaner mobile devices available for your trip. UCCS - OIT International Travel Loaner Laptop Program
  • Avoid the use of Internet Cafes or other types of untrusted internet networks. Do not use public Wi-Fi connections such as Wi-Fi at airports or hotels. If possible, use a University provided VPN for all wireless connections or remote networks.
  • Do not accept thumb drives, CDs, or any other type of new/unknown removable device while traveling overseas. These removable devices can contain malware or other types of viruses that can expose your computer to unauthorized access and intrusion.
  • Be aware of export control regulations, including the ITAR, EAR, and OFAC federal regulations. Some exports may require licenses or additional authorization and documentation. Do not take export controlled hardware, software, or information out of the United States without consulting OSPRI exportcontrol@uccs.edu.
  • Please review the International Travel and Export Controls website for additional guidance.