This page contains a listing of covernames associated with the Government Communications Security Bureau (GCSB). GCSB is responsible for providing signals intelligence (SIGINT) and information assurance services to the government and assistance to other New Zealand government agencies.
I have produced similar lists for Communications Security Establishment (CSE), Government Communications Headquarters (GCHQ), Australian Signals Directorate (ASD), and National Security Agency (NSA). You may also want to visit Electrospaces.net, which has also developed lists of covernames for some of the above mentioned agencies.
In some cases, you may find that covernames are listed across different agencies. This results from how covernames lists have often been created, which involved close reading of documents that were associated with different agencies and then listing covernames under the agency which authored the documents. In all cases, I would suggest you search across agency covername lists when researching a given covername.
All material provided below is derived from publicly available documents, books, and other resources. Descriptions of what the covernames mean or refer to are done on a best-effort basis; if you believe there is additional publicly referenced material derived from GCSB documents which could supplement descriptions please let me know.
Last updated January 12, 2023.
APPARITION (APN) – Installation was planned for June 2012 (GCSB Update 21 March 2012, 15). See GCHQ covernames.
CAPRICA – A SIGINT collection program that was ‘fine tuned’ to better capture 1800MHz cellular signals emitted from Solomon Telekom infrastructure (GCSB SIGINT Development Quarterly Report, 2).
DARKQUEST (DQ) – This covername is associated with SHAREDQUEST (SQ). Its initial capacity was likely installed November 10, 2011 (GCSB Update 21 March 2012, 13). See NSA covernames.
FALLOW HAUNT – This covername is associated with SHAREDQUEST (SQ). It was likely installed November 10, 2011 and lacked KEYCARD capability (GCSB Update 21 March 2012, 13). See NSA covernames.
IRONSAND – This mission captured satellite changes, technology changes, and projected SPEARGUN within its auspice (GCSB Update 21 March 2012). It was likely a cover name for Waihopai Station.
JUGGERNAUT – See NSA covernames.
KEYCARD – See NSA covernames.
LOPERS D1 –
LOPERS M1 –
PREBOIL – This covername pertains to a radio-frequency survey at Honiara (capital of Solomon Islands) that was planned with DSD (GCSB SIGINT Development Quarterly Report, 2).
SHAREDQUEST (SQ) – This covername encompasses the DARKQUEST and FALLOWHAUNT projects or programs (GCSB Update 21 March 2012, 12-13). See GCHQ covernames.
SILVER PEAK – Pertained to WAN optimizers and was part of the broader IRONSAND ‘mission’ (GCSB Update 21 March 2012, 10).
SPEARGUN – Pertained to the GCSB’s cable access program (SPEARGUN Phase 1, 1).
VENUSAFFECT – See NSA covernames.
VQUEST – An initiative meant to provide a way forward for SHAREDQUEST (GCSB Update 22 April 2010, 10).
WEALTHYCLUSTER (WC) – See NSA covernames.