Sunday, September 14, 2008

Clandestine Intelligence-Gathering Turns To Open-Source Data

Bob Brewin writes on

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 noted.

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.

More here.


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