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Open source approach reshapes intelligence-gathering




Open source approach reshapes intelligence-gathering
Open source approach reshapes intelligence-gathering



Forwarded from: William Knowles  

http://www.washingtontechnology.com/news/1_1/daily_news/28411-1.html 

By Alice Lipowicz
Staff Writer
04/19/06

New forms of intelligence-gathering - including the availability of 
open-source information on the Internet - are becoming increasingly 
important for fighting terrorism and may even reduce the need for more 
traditional collection efforts, according to a new report [1] from the 
Congressional Research Service. 

The report, titled "Intelligence Issues for Congress," outlines the 
challenges in intelligence-gathering, analysis and dissemination 
facing the director of national intelligence and the 15 other federal 
intelligence agencies in the post-9/11 era, with a large part of the 
activity is focused on counterterrorism. 

While the intelligence community traditionally has relied on signals, 
imagery and human intelligence, there is now a growing interest in 
open-source intelligence (OSINT) as well as in measurement and 
signatures analysis intelligence (MASINT) the report said. 

Osint refers to an intelligence-gathering approach based on analyzing 
information collected from open sources=97namely, from information 
available to the general public. 

The rising dependence on open sourcing is partly due to a requirement 
for a broad range of information about many regions and subjects 
throughout the world, instead of the former concentration on military 
and political issues in a small number of countries, the report said. 
The need for translation and analysis has increased as well. 

"Many observers believe that intelligence agencies should be more 
aggressive in using OSINT; some believe that the availability of OSINT 
may even reduce the need for certain collection efforts," the report 
stated. 

Another intelligence discipline receiving greater emphasis in recent 
years is MASINT, which is a highly technical discipline used by the 
Defense Intelligence Agency and others in which complex analytical 
refinements are applied to information collected by signal 
intelligence and geospatial imagery. 

"A key problem has been retaining personnel with expertise in MASINT 
systems who are offered more remunerative positions in private 
industry," the report said. 

[1] http://www.fas.org/sgp/crs/intel/IB10012.pdf 



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