By Bob Brewin
September 12, 2008
The global explosion in Internet-based new media has made open source
information invaluable to intelligence agencies, CIA Director Michael
Hayden said on Friday at the ODNI Open Source Conference in Washington.
Sections of the president's daily intelligence brief are "derived
exclusively from open source intelligence" Hayden told the conference,
which attracted more than 3,000 attendees from intelligence agencies,
academia and industry. Those sections bear the stamp of the Office of
the Director of National Intelligence's Open Source Center.
Development of an open source intelligence organization was one of three
key objectives for the ODNI when it was created in 2005, Hayden said,
just behind the establishment of a central clandestine service branch
and a security branch within the FBI. The Open Source Center, which is
managed by the CIA and serves the entire intelligence community, has
paid rich dividends since it went into operation in November 2005, he
ODNI built the center around the CIA's Foreign Broadcast Intelligence
Service which monitors overseas radio and television programs, and today
uses that core capability to pump more than 300 foreign TV broadcasts
into intelligence operations centers, Hayden said.
Doug Naquin, director of the Open Source Center, said media monitored by
his analysts include blogs, chat rooms, and social networking sites such
as YouTube and MySpace. Hayden said such media allows intelligence
analysts to engage in the kind of social interaction with foreign
societies that he had to do in person while serving as an Air Force
attach in the mid-1980s.
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