The haystack matters and solves BETTER than HUMINT. Turns the case.
(R.C. Porter, Retired Intelligence Official with more than 33 years of experience in both the military and civilian affairs, M.S. Middle Eastern Studies/National Security Policy Studies, Elliott School of International Affairs, George Washington University. One year study program, National Defense University/Industrial College of the Armed Forces — National Security Resource Management, 1994. B.A., Criminal Justice, Louisiana State University, Baton Rouge Louisiana, May, 1979, “THE DUMBING DOWN OF U.S. INTELLIGENCE; AND, WHY METADATA, AND THE ‘HAYSTACK’ MATTER — IN COMBATING TERRORISM AND PROTECTING THE U.S. HOMELAND – ‘YOU NEED A HAYSTACK….TO FIND A NEEDLE’”, http://fortunascorner.com/2015/05/11/the-dumbing-down-of-u-s-intelligence-and-why-metadata-and-the-haystack-matter-in-combating-terrorism-and-protecting-the-u-s-homeland-you-need-a-haystack-to-find-a-needle/, May 11, 2015, ak.)
The above is the title of an Op-Ed by Gordon Crovitz in the May 11, 2015 edition of The Wall Street Journal. Mr. Crovitz begins by noting that “FBI Director James Comey warned last week that the American Islamists who tried to assassinate free-speech advocates at a cartoon exhibition near Dallas, Texas…..are not alone. There are “hundreds, maybe thousands” of potential terrorists in the U.S. being inspired by overseas groups.” “The haystack is the entire country,” he said. “We are looking for needles; but, increasingly the needles are unavailable to us.” “The needles will be even harder to find, if Congress weakens the Patriot Act, by reducing the intelligence available to national security,” and law enforcement agencies. “With the rise of the Islamic State and its global recruiting tools, intelligence agencies should be allowed to join the “big data” revolution,” Mr. Crovitz wrote. “Edward Snowden’s data theft raised privacy alarms; but, by now — it’s clear that no one working for the National Security Agency (NSA), leaked confidential data — other than Snowden himself,” Mr. Crovitz correctly observes. “He evaded the 300 lawyers and compliance officers who monitor how NSA staff use data.” “POTUS Obama, last year, recalled how the 9/11 hijackers escaped detection — because laws prohibited NSA from gathering and connecting the dots. He explained that the Patriot Act was passed, to “address a gap identified after 911,” by having intelligence agencies collect anonymous metadata — date, time, and duration of phone calls. But, POTUS Obama reversed himself and now wants to gut the program,” Mr. Crovitz warns. “Instead of the NSA gathering call information, phone companies would hold the data. With multiple, unconnected databases, the NSA would no longer be able to access data to mine. There wouldn’t be dots to connect to threats. As for privacy, the phone companies’ databases would be less secure than the NSA’S.” “Lawmakers will decide this month whether to extend the Patriot Act or, to water it down. Instead, they should update it to maximize both privacy, and intelligence,” Mr. Crovitz argues. “Technology now has the answer, if only politicians would get out of the way.” “Recent innovations in big data allow staggering amounts of information to be collected and mined. These data deliver correlations based on an individually anonymous basis. This work was originally done to support the chief revenue engine of the Internet — advertising. The technology generates increasingly targeted marketing messages based on an individuals’ online activities.” “The techniques have other applications. Google used them to become better than the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, at predicting flu outbreaks by monitoring search terms like “flu medicine,” by location. Canadian researchers studied thousands of premature babies, and identified symptoms that precede fevers. Cities apply predictive policing by mining online data to assign cops where they’re needed.” “The fast shift to self-driving cars is possible, because of data transmitted among vehicles. Small drones share data that keep them from crashing into one another. A Brown University researcher discovered how banks could use metadata about people’s cell phone usage to determine their creditworthiness.” “The Patriot Act was written in 2001, before any of these advances. It lets the NSA keep anonymous data about who is calling whom for five years; but, it isn’t able to apply algorithms to find suspicious patterns. Analysts may examine call logs for suspicious links, only if there is a pre-existing “reasonable, articulable suspicion” of terrorism, or another threat to national security. There were 170 such searches last year,” . “Before the Snowden leaks two years ago, Intelligence agencies had planned to ask Congress to broaden their access to anonymous data — so they could use modern tools of big data. Technology has moved far ahead, leaving intelligence -gathering stupider,” Mr. Crovitz wrote. “A measure of how far behind the technology curve the intelligence agencies have become is that one of the would-be cartoon killers posted a message on Twitter beforehand, with the hashtag #TexasAttack. Law enforcement [authorities] didn’t spot it until after the attack. In contrast, algorithms for delivering advertising parse signals such as hashtags to deliver relevant ads in real time…before the online page loads.” “In their 2013 book, “Big Data: A Revolution That Will Transform How We Live, Work, And Think,” Viktor Mayer-Schonberger and Kenneth Cukier describe the history of information: “As centuries passed, we opted for more information flows rather than less, and to guard against its excesses — not primarily through censorship; but, through rules that limited the misuse of information.” In conclusion, Mr. Crovitz writes, “Congress should insist that the NSA ensure its data are used properly — no more Snowdens — but, also give the agency authority to catch up to how the private sector uses data. Politicians should update the Patriot Act by permitting the intelligence use of data to prevent terrorism.” Mapping Terror Networks: Why Metadata And The ‘Haystack’ Matters Philip Mudd, former Deputy Director of the CIA’s Counter-Terrorism Center, and Senior Intelligence Adviser to the FBI, [at the time his article was published], wrote an Op-Ed in the Dec. 30, 2014 Wall Street Journal noting that the CIA, FBI, and the entire U.S. Intelligence Community and national security establishment had devoted countless hours as to “how best can [we] clarify [and posture ourselves regarding] the blurring picture of an emerging terror conspiracy [aimed at the United States] originating overseas, or inside the United States. “How can we identify the key players (network/link analysis) and the broader network of their fundraisers [enablers], radicalizers, travel facilitators and others….quickly enough so that they can’t succeed?,” as well as protect civil liberties. “And,” Mr. Mudd adds, “how do we ensure that we’ve ‘mapped’ the network enough to dismantle it?; or at a minimum, disrupt it?” Mr. Mudd observes, “in essence, you need a haystack — in order to find a needle.” Last year, Federal Appeals Court Judge William H. Pauley ruled NSA metadata collection lawful; and added, “the government needs a wide net that can isolate gossamer contacts among suspected terrorists in an ocean of seemingly disconnected data; HUMINT is the more desirable method of collecting this kind of information — but, gathering critical HUMINT is often difficult and time consuming,” not to mention that the Obama administration has been great at droning terrorists; but, hasn’t added a single individual to Guantanamo Bay Prison. Dead men tell no tales. You can’t get critical HUMIINT — if you stick your head in the sand and refuse to establish an interrogation facility for this very purpose. Treating terrorists as criminals to be tried in a ‘normal’ court of law is absurd, counterproductive, and dangerous. As Mr. Mudd wrote at the time, “mapping a network of people is simple in concept; but, complex in practice: find the key operators, and then find the support group. Map a network poorly, and you may miss peripheral players who will recreate a conspiracy after the core of conspirators are arrested. The goal,” Mr. Mudd said, “is to eliminate the entire spider-web of conspiracy; cutting off a piece like an arm of a starfish, is a poor second choice — the starfish’s arm — regenerates.” “Investigators also need an historical pool of data,” Mr. Mudd argued at the time, “that they can access only when they have information that starts with a known, or suspected conspirator — in the middle of a spider-web they don’t fully understand,” and is missing a few corners. Who is watchers is a legitimate concern; and, a healthy skepticism about government claims for access to even more personal data…is desirable, warranted, and needed. But, the further and further we move away — in time — from the September 11, 2001 terrorist attack here on the U.S. homeland — the more we seem to lose the raison d’ tere for why we passed the Patriot Act in the first place. As the Intelligence Community and Law Enforcement authorities with respect to the mass collection of phone data are allowed to atrophy and erode — our ability to ferret out and discover potential terrorist attacks against the U.S. homeland also decay. I am not sure I know the right answer as to where the balance lied — between the protection of civil liberties, versus the requirement to collect ‘enough’ data — that enables our intelligence and law enforcement professionals to — connect the dots. But, I think I know one thing for sure. If we do suffer a large-scale terrorist event here at home — on the scale of 9/11 or worse — and, it is determined that we likely would have been able to discover this event before hand — if we had allowed a more reasonable big data mining strata — there will be hell to pay — and, perhaps a Patriot Act on steroids. It is easy to criticize law enforcement and intelligence agencies desires for greater authority and flexibility in regards to the collection of data; but, how you see it — depends on where you sit. If you are charged with protecting the American homeland, it is a very difficult balancing act — with few clear answers.
Their Johnson card assumes Resource wars– but those won’t happen.
David G,- Adjunct Senior Fellow for Science and Technology, Council on Foreign Relations; Director, Program on Energy and Sustainable Development @ Stanford “Smoke and Mirror” http://www.nationalinterest.org/PrinterFriendly.aspx?id=16530
MY ARGUMENT is that classic resource wars—hot conflicts driven by a struggle to grab resources—are increasingly rare. Even where resources play a role, they are rarely the root cause of bloodshed. Rather, the root cause usually lies in various failures of governance. That argument—in both its classic form and in its more nuanced incarnation—is hardly a straw man, as Thomas Homer-Dixon asserts. Setting aside hyperbole, the punditry increasingly points to resources as a cause of war. And so do social scientists and policy analysts, even with their more nuanced views. I’ve triggered this debate because conventional wisdom puts too much emphasis on resources as a cause of conflict. Getting the story right has big implications for social scientists trying to unravel cause-and-effect and often even larger implications for public policy. Michael Klare is right to underscore Saddam Hussein’s invasion of Kuwait, the only classic resource conflict in recent memory. That episode highlights two of the reasons why classic resource wars are becoming rare—they’re expensive and rarely work. (And even in Kuwait’s case, many other forces also spurred the invasion. Notably, Iraq felt insecure with its only access to the sea a narrow strip of land sandwiched between Kuwait on one side and its archenemy Iran on the other.) In the end, Saddam lost resources on the order of $100 billion (plus his country and then his head) in his quest for Kuwait’s 1.5 million barrels per day of combined oil and gas output. By contrast, Exxon paid $80 billion to get Mobil’s 1.7 million barrels per day of oil and gas production—a merger that has held and flourished. As the bulging sovereign wealth funds are discovering, it is easier to get resources through the stock exchange than the gun barrel.
Alt cause – Human intel fails for other reasons.
O’Brien, 05- President and CEO of Artemis Global Logistics & Solutions, Former Graduate Research Assistant at the Jebsen Center for Counter Terrorism Research, Former International Trade Specialist for the Department of Commerce (James, “Trojan Horses: Using Current U.S. Intelligence Resources To Successfully Infiltrate Islamic Terror Groups”, International Affairs Review Vol. 14 No.2 Fall 2005)//KTC
Nevertheless, it is easier to recognize HUMINT deficiencies than to fix them. This is especially true when reconstituting sectors spread over several agencies that have been allowed to corrode. There is no quick fix in resolving this deficiency. This reality is recognized by both policy advisors and policy-makers, who propose long-term investments in intelligence reform. A 2002 Congressional Research Service report exemplifies this mindset: While U.S. policymakers are emphasizing the need for rapid intelligence overhaul to close the HUMINT deficit, the United States is fighting a War on Terror with other countries’ unreliable eyes. 142 · International Affairs Review First is a renewed emphasis on human agents. Signals intelligence and imagery satellites have their uses in the counterterrorism mission, but intelligence to counter terrorism depends more on human intelligence (HUMINT) such as spies and informers. Any renewed emphasis on human intelligence necessarily will involve a willingness to accept risks of complicated and dangerous missions, and likely ties to disreputable individuals who may be in positions to provide valuable information. Time and patience will be needed to train analysts in difficult skills and languages.h Unfortunately, the “time and patience” necessary to develop these operatives is not a luxury the United States can afford. The 9/11 Commission Report describes the rapid nature and lack of warning that defines the current security environment: National security used to be considered by studying foreign frontiers, weighing opposing groups of states, and measuring industrial might…. Threats emerged slowly, often visibly, as weapons were forged, armies conscripted, and units trained and moved into place…. Now threats can emerge quickly. An organization like al Qaeda, headquartered in a country on the other side of the earth, in a region so poor that electricity or telephones were scarce, could nonetheless scheme to wield weapons of unprecedented destructive power in the largest cities of the United States.i Furthermore, even if the United States succeeds in developing the types of intelligence operatives with the skill sets desired for an effective war against Islamic extremists, the capacity to penetrate these groups will likely never be fully achieved. The problem is that Islamic terrorist groups are highly insulated from outside intrusion because of their family-based and/or clan-based recruitment policies: “Ethnically based terrorist groups recruit new members personally known to them, people whose backgrounds are known and who often have family ties to the organization. Intelligence penetration of organizations recruited this way is extremely difficult.”j Even those organizations that do not recruit exclusively through family ties, such as al Qaeda, still employ a severe level of vetting that places an operative’s survival in jeopardy. Regional dialects, local cultural sensitivities and “six-degrees-of-separation” within small populations all work against an operative attempting to secure a terrorist leader’s trust. Recognizing these difficulties, Rich Trojan Horses · 143 ard Betts summarizes this operational reality: “More and better spies will help, but no one should expect breakthroughs if we get them. It is close to impossible to penetrate small, disciplined, alien organizations like Osama bin Laden’s al Qaeda, and especially hard to find reliable U.S. citizens who have even a remote chance of trying.”k Nevertheless, the intelligence community should pursue HUMINT reform that will develop operatives with penetration potential, but accessing the inner circles of terror groups may take years to materialize, or may even be impossible. For example, if the operative is accepted by a terror group, he may be isolated or removed from the organization’s hierarchy, leaving the operative uninformed as to what other groups within the same organization are planning, including the cell within which he may be operating.l Therefore, recognizing the U.S. HUMINT deficiency, the lengthy process of comprehensive reform, the unpredictable nature of terrorism as a constant imminent threat, and the insulated structure of terrorist groups, the United States will need to employ creative methods to collect information without jeopardizing long-term intelligence reform. Bruce Hoffman suggests “some new, ‘out-of-the-box’ thinking that would go beyond simple bureaucratic fixes.”m One possibility is taking a backdoor approach to penetrating various fundamentalist terrorist organizations. SOLUTION PROPOSED: WORK WITH THE TOOLS WE HAVE The Backdoor One backdoor ripe for exploitation is the dependence of Islamic extremists on illicit activities and services to fund, train, and/or facilitate their operations.n The “Achilles heel” of terror groups is their dependence on criminal or other interconnected terrorist groups to provide certain services to them, specifically weapons and drug smuggling. The United States should exploit this dependence and has the capacity to do The “Achilles heel” of terror groups is their dependence on criminal or other interconnected terrorist groups to provide certain services to them, specifically weapons and drug smuggling. 144 · International Affairs Review so. This backdoor should be envisioned just as the name connotes: an alternative entrance that is easier to sneak into than the front door. In the world of computer programming, a backdoor is “an undocumented way of gaining access to a program, online service or an entire computer system. The backdoor is written by the programmer who creates the code for the program. It is often only known by the programmer. A backdoor is a potential security risk.”o When hackers discover backdoors in software programs, they exploit them. The U.S. intelligence community should adopt the hackers’ approach; infiltration agents should be looking for similar types of alternative access routes.
No NSA overload – Accumulo tech solves.
(Not Scott Harris, because large data sets do sometimes overwhelm him… But Derrick Harris. Derrick in a senior writer at Gigaom and has been a technology journalist since 2003. He has been covering cloud computing, big data and other emerging IT trends for Gigaom since 2009. Derrick also holds a law degree from the University of Nevada, Las Vegas. This evidence is also internally quoting Adam Fuchs – a former NSA employee that was involved in software design. “Under the covers of the NSA’s big data effort” – Gigaom - Jun. 7, 2013 - https://gigaom.com/2013/06/07/under-the-covers-of-the-nsas-big-data-effort/)
The NSA’s data collection practices have much of America — and certainly the tech community — on edge, but sources familiar with the agency’s technology are saying the situation isn’t as bad as it seems. Yes, the agency has a lot of data and can do some powerful analysis, but, the argument goes, there are strict limits in place around how the agency can use it and who has access. Whether that’s good enough is still an open debate, but here’s what we know about the technology that’s underpinning all that data. The technological linchpin to everything the NSA is doing from a data-analysis perspective is Accumulo — an open-source database the agency built in order to store and analyze huge amounts of data. Adam Fuchs knows Accumulo well because he helped build it during a nine-year stint with the NSA; he’s now co-founder and CTO of a company called Sqrrl that sells a commercial version of the database system. I spoke with him earlier this week, days before news broke of the NSA collecting data from Verizon and the country’s largest web companies. The NSA began building Accumulo in late 2007, Fuchs said, because they were trying to do automated analysis for tracking and discovering new terrorism suspects. “We had a set of applications that we wanted to develop and we were looking for the right infrastructure to build them on,” he said. The problem was those technologies weren’t available. He liked what projects like HBase were doing by using Hadoop to mimic Google’s famous BigTable data store, but it still wasn’t up to the NSA requirements around scalability, reliability or security. So, they began work on a project called CloudBase, which eventually was renamed Accumulo. Now, Fuchs said, “It’s operating at thousands-of-nodes scale” within the NSA’s data centers. There are multiple instances each storing tens of petabytes (1 petabyte equals 1,000 terabyes or 1 million gigabytes) of data and it’s the backend of the agency’s most widely used analytical capabilities. Accumulo’s ability to handle data in a variety of formats (a characteristic called “schemaless” in database jargon) means the NSA can store data from numerous sources all within the database and add new analytic capabilities in days or even hours. “It’s quite critical,” he added. What the NSA can and can’t do with all this data As I explained on Thursday, Accumulo is especially adept at analyzing trillions of data points in order to build massive graphs that can detect the connections between them and the strength of the connections. Fuchs didn’t talk about the size of the NSA’s graph, but he did say the database is designed to handle months or years worth of information and let analysts move from query to query very fast. When you’re talking about analyzing call records, it’s easy to see where this type of analysis would be valuable in determining how far a suspected terrorist’s network might spread and who might be involved.
Big Data can handle it.
Brandon H. Pontius. The author holds a B.S. from Louisiana State University and an M.B.A., Louisiana State University. The author wrote this piece in partial fulfillment of a MASTER OF SCIENCE IN COMPUTER SCIENCE from the NAVAL POSTGRADUATE SCHOOL. The thesis advisor that reviewed this piece is Mark Gondree, PhD. Gondree is a security researcher associated with the Computer Science Dept at the Naval Postgraduate School – “INFORMATION SECURITY CONSIDERATIONS FOR APPLICATIONS USING APACHE ACCUMULO” - September 2014 - http://calhoun.nps.edu/bitstream/handle/10945/43980/14Sep_Pontius_Brandon.pdf?sequence=1
Generation of actionable intelligence from large data sets requires efficient analysis. Manual analysis of large data sets to develop these insights is unsustainably resource intensive. In January 2014, the deputy director of the Defense Intelligence Agency noted, “We’re looking for needles within haystacks while trying to define what the needle is, in an era of declining resources and increasing threats” . Big data platforms have the storage and analytical capabilities necessary to handle large data sets. These solutions can relieve the processing burden on human analysts and allow them to spend more time generating real intelligence . Big data analytics make information more usable, improve decision making, and lead to more focused missions and services. For instance, geographically separated teams can access a real-time common operating picture, diagnostic data mining can support proactive maintenance programs that prevent battlefield failures, and data can be transformed into a common structure that allows custom queries by a distributed force composed of many communities , .
Aff can’t solve because of circumvention. Even Original Freedom Act is not strict enough.
Jennifer Granick is the Director of Civil Liberties at the Stanford Center for Internet and Society. Jennifer was the Civil Liberties Director at the Electronic Frontier Foundation. Jennifer practices, speaks and writes about computer crime and security, electronic surveillance, consumer privacy, data protection, copyright, trademark and the Digital Millennium Copyright Act. From 2001 to 2007, Jennifer was Executive Director of CIS and taught Cyberlaw, Computer Crime Law, Internet intermediary liability, and Internet law and policy. Before teaching at Stanford, Jennifer earned her law degree from University of California, Hastings College of the Law and her undergraduate degree from the New College of the University of South Florida. “USA Freedom Act: Oh, Well. Whatever. Nevermind.” – Just Security - May 21, 2014 http://justsecurity.org/10675/usa-freedom-act-oh-well-whatever-nevermind/
Additionally, in December of 2013, Deputy Attorney General James Cole testified before the Senate Judiciary Committee that the NSA might continue its bulk collection of nearly all domestic phone call records, even if the original USA FREEDOM ACT passed into law. As I wrote at the time, this testimony shows that the Administration and the intelligence community believe they can do whatever they want, regardless of the laws Congress passes, so long they can convince one of the judges appointed to the secretive Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court (FISC) to agree. All they need is some legal hook they can present with a straight face.