Transnational Repression

When foreign governments stalk, intimidate, or assault people in the United States, it is considered transnational repression. It is illegal, and you can get help to stop it.

Some countries’ governments harass and intimidate their own citizens living in the U.S. These governments may also target naturalized or U.S.-born citizens who have family overseas or other foreign connections. This violates U.S. law and individual rights and freedoms.

Transnational repression may take the following forms:

  • Stalking
  • Harassment
  • Hacking
  • Assaults
  • Attempted kidnapping
  • Forcing or coercing the victim to return to the home country
  • Threatening or detaining family members in the home country
  • Freezing financial assets
  • Online disinformation campaigns

Governments use transnational repression tactics to silence the voices of their citizens (or non-citizens connected to the country), get information from them, or coerce them to return home.

Who Is Targeted

Foreign governments typically target:

  • Political and human rights activists
  • Dissidents
  • Journalists
  • Political opponents
  • Religious or ethnic minority groups
Image that says Transnational Repression Is Illegal

If you are in the U.S., including a U.S. territory, your freedom of speech is protected, regardless of your citizenship.

How to Report

  • Contact the FBI online at
  • Call 1-800-CALL-FBI (1-800-225-5324).

Threat Intimidation Guide

Examples and Related Press Releases 

Some press releases are available in other languages. See translated press releases section below.