The term open intelligence comes from any kind of public data for analysis. This is extremely useful in the security sector given the availability of this data.
The number of threats that are now looming over in the security business is huge. The need to make proper use of information is going to be crucial for this to be successful. Today we are going to provide some essentials on how open intelligence can be a powerful tool for security.
Information does not equal intelligence
One of the first things to consider is that information does not equal intelligence by any means. The way for information to become intelligence for security purposes is to analyze and assess the data. Moreover, the strategies used to analyze that data play a huge role in their results.
Once this takes place, the information turns into intelligence and this is how effective security measures work. Being able to structure threat assessments is going to prove to be an essential part of this process.
The biggest concern is that threats evolve and this means they need to be considered an endless focus of analysis. The re-evaluation of existing intelligence is a constant thing to consider.
Nothing evolves as fast as data for security purposes and this happens due to many different factors. That is the reason why it needs to be a constant effort to provide the desired results. If you handle data as something that does not change, it will become obsolete within months or even weeks.
Public data that leads to threat identification
One of the greatest aspects of the modern world is that we are living in an era of public information. People are no longer living their lives and giving their opinions with their social circles. They are using social media as an open forum to let the world know their intentions.
Individuals with potential to become a threat are likely to make use of social media to voice their opinions. Moreover, their publications can lead to great insight regarding their next move.
It’s important to note that the data you gather from these types of publications is often going to be of a cryptic nature. What this means is that no one is expecting this data to reveal specific intentions of an illegal nature.
What it does lead to are clues that can help you put the puzzle pieces together to form the bigger picture. Once this happens, the process becomes much easier. With that said, the complexity of interpreting data with accurate results is the biggest challenge.
Knowing where to look for this information is the first step that leads to reliable data. This is going to require that you are able to look into specific groups. Some of these groups may have public access to a number of people. In addition, they could also offer areas that are more restricted for those who are deeply involved.
This could require more work in order to gain access to those restricted groups. Doing this could lead to a wealth of intelligence. This is going to require that someone has the skills to convince people in these groups to let them become more involved members of their organizations.
The internet makes this process much easier
There was a time when obtaining intelligence regarding a criminal organization required someone to be physically infiltrated. This was a very risky way to handle this process and it meant that the individual was taking a risk.
If someone within one of these organizations intends to gather intelligence to work against them, the results can be quite dangerous. Also, there is no need for this thanks to the use of social media and other internet based communications platforms.
The use of services to cloak your location and the easy with which an individual can create a fake profile to interact with groups is a very powerful advantage. Moreover, this makes it easier for someone to gather data. Also to be able to reach a certain level of involvement without being at risk of discovery.
Probabilistic thinking is a key aspect to identify potential threats
Being able to calculate and measure the probability of something happening is crucial for optimal security. Those who are able to make those predictions by using probability strategies are going to achieve better results.
Possible outcomes are always going to help reduce the level of uncertainty in terms of security decisions. Consequently, this is not easy and it can often lead to unexpected and costly outcomes.
This is the nature of probability and prediction when they are both merged to create results. It is important to note that this can also be very effective. Furthermore, this will require that the security organization is able to create a proper approach to gather the data.
Blending offline and online resources
A great way for any security organization to gather substantial data is in combining the findings in the offline field with their online data. This creates a wealth of information that is ready for processing.
Doing this is crucial due to how threat assessment is such a volatile and constantly changing process. This is going to be a great way for any company to achieve the expected results. The great thing about blending this information is that it gives security companies access to more data.
This is going to prove to be the most relevant and important thing to accomplish. Given that the offline world and the online world are now so intrinsically mixed, this needs to happen constantly.
Open intelligence and the evolving threats are a very important part of any security process. It is essential to do this in a way that truly makes sense. This is not a simple process, but once you are able to make optimal use of data, finding threats will become a much easier task.
By Joseph Sordi, SVP
Strategic Security Corp.