Monday, September 15, 2014


     The Effects of the Internet, Social Media and Open Source Data on Intelligence Analysis is the theme for an October 2014 seminar sponsored by the National Cryptologic Museum.  I will be there gathering information on this topic for my online spy series- "Corey Pearson- CIA Spymaster in the Caribbean".
     A senior officer in the FBI Cyber Division, Mr. Roozbeh, will discuss this topic from the domestic perspective and Mr. Martin Petersen, a former senior officer in the CIA Intelligence and Analysis Directorate, will present views from the foreign intelligence perspective.
     The Edward Snowden leak will be discussed as well. Mr. John C. Inglis, the Robert L. Looker Chair for Cyber Studies at the U.S. Naval Academy and former Deputy Director of NSA will discuss the aftermath of Snowden's disclosures. I wrote an article about the Snowden affair, entitled "Snowden Justifies Outsourcing Domestic Surveillance to China", and will very interested in what they have to say.
     The National Cryptologic Museum (NCM) is located next to the National Security Agency (NSA) in Fort Meade, Maryland and is the NSA's gateway to the American public; it shares its cryptologic legacy and place in history, allowing the public to view thousands of priceless code-breaking and code- making artifacts, like the original enigma code-breaking machine.
National Security Agency (NSA)

     The effects of open source data on intelligence analysis was written about by Robert  David Steele in his article "Open Source Intelligence (OSINT)". He believes that the secret intelligence communities are blinded because they operate from the inside-out, due to their historical prejudice against OSINT. They collect data to answer critical questions that policy makers want answers to immediately. Steele says the IC intel-gatherers start with unilaterally collected secrets, rather than beginning with what they can learn from the outside-in. He also states they are upside down because they rely too much on expensive overhead satellite systems, instead of from bottom-up ground truth networks of humans with deep historical, cultural, and localized knowledge.
     Steele's article was written a while back and I believe attitudes are changing- the U.S. Intelligence Community (IC) is utilizing OSINT to a greater degree. Steele anticipates that OSINT will displace 80% of the current manpower and dollars devoted to secret sources & methods.  We shall see!

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 Robert Morton, M.Ed., Ed.S. is a member of the Association Of Former Intelligence Officers (AFIO) and writes the online spy novel series "Corey Pearson- CIA Spymaster in the Caribbean".  The views expressed on this site do not represent those of any organization he is a member of. Contact him on the Secure Contact Form

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