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The Open Source Academy helps the intelligence community make the most of open sources.

The Open Source Center's (OSC) Open Source Academy (OSA) has won recognition as a leading provider of OS tradecraft training in the Intelligence Community (IC) since its establishment in 2003. Intelligence consumers are placing a greater value on open source intelligence (OSINT), prompting OS specialists from the IC, policy and military communities, and other federal government organizations to take advantage of OSA courses to build their OS skills.

The Academy's core curriculum includes instructor-led courses on a growing range of topics including basic tradecraft, Internet exploitation, and reviewing finished intelligence products. OSA Provost Dave Kraus explains that there is more than meets the eye to using OS data. He says, "Our analytic tradecraft courses teach how to analyze the media, including ownership of media organizations and their political leanings. The courses on Internet exploitation go beyond the casual search skills that we've developed at home and in school. There are very precise search and research strategies, that are not intuitive, to cull valuable information from the Internet."

In response to the need to develop OS expertise throughout the IC, the OSA welcomes participants from all government organizations including the armed forces and law enforcement. As of November 2005, the Academy has hosted 88 participants from the Air Force, Army, Marine Corps, Navy, DOD's Counterintelligence Field Activity, Department of Homeland Security (DHS), Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA), Department of Treasury, Department of State, National Geospatial Intelligence Agency (NGA), National Reconnaissance Office (NRO), and National Security Agency (NSA). Even BBC Monitoring, an OSC partner in the UK, has sent personnel to the Academy's courses. Mr. Kraus expects attendance to grow as the OSA increases its outreach efforts and introduces new courses.

The courses that have attracted the highest interest include: Hidden Universes of Information on the Internet, Security and Privacy for Internet Users, Introductory Analytic Tradecraft, and the seminar series co-sponsored with George Mason University on Understanding and Analyzing Global Media. Multiple guest students have also attended Assessing Media Environments, Classification Workshop, Dissemination Platforms, Introduction to the Field, Media Analysis, Orientation to the Open Source Center, OSINT and the Other INTs, and Overview of the OSC Collection Requirements Process.

Editor's Note: There are four articles from the DNI Open Source Center in this issue of MIPB. Two of the articles, DOD and the DNI Open Source Center-Building the Partnership and The Open Source Academy Helps the Intelligence Community Make the Most of Open Sources, are unclassified. The other two articles, History of Open Source Exploitation in the Intelligence Community and, are FOUO and can be found on the sensitive but unclassified (SBU) "side" of MIPB. Request a user's account to read these and other articles at the MIPB Home Page, For more information on the Open Source Center, call Customer Service at 1.800.205.8615.
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Author:Peak, Douglas
Publication:Military Intelligence Professional Bulletin
Date:Oct 1, 2005
Previous Article:DOD and the DNI Open Source Center--Building the Partnership.
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