It’s been a couple of weeks now since the terrorist attack at the Boston Marathon, and since then the media and others have been questioning whether there was an intelligence failure at the FBI. It’s not an easy question to answer, given how many suspicious persons and activities government agencies must have on their radars, and all the data there is to deal with.
It’s undeniably hard work. Semantic technology does come into play to help the government connect the dots on information related to threats and other intelligence issues. For example, Dennis Wisnosky, formerly CTO and Chief Architect, Business Mission Area, U.S. Department of Defense, discussed semantic technology’s role in that institution at SemTech in San Francisco in 2011. (Wisnosky now is spending more time with FIBO in his role providing technical strategy and operational guidance to help the The Enterprise Data Management Council finalize and implement Financial Industry Business Ontology standards – see story here.) It’s also been reported that the FBI and CIA are practicing and developing semantic processing techniques to analyse social media to improve situational awareness and identify emerging threats.
Semantic tech is being applied by military intelligence, too, in services like the Air Force and Marine Corp., which are testing or have live deployments of semantic systems developed by Modus Operandi. The Air Force is involved with analyzing email traffic on a 24/7 basis, while the Marine Corp. works with it as part of the cyber portion war games exercises. The Office of Naval Research also is utilizing it as part of its lab exercises, says Modus Operandi president Rick McNeight.