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Intelligence Terms



Intelligence Collection Plan

Intelligence Cycle

Intelligence Estimate

Intelligence Operations

Intelligence Preparation of the Battlespace

Counterintelligence - (DOD) Information gathered and activities conducted to protect against espionage, other intelligence activities, sabotage, or assassinations conducted by or on behalf of foreign governments or elements thereof, foreign organizations, or foreign persons, or international terrorist activities. Also called CI.

Intelligence - The product resulting from the collection, processing, integration, analysis, evaluation, and interpretation of available information concerning foreign countries or areas. Also, information and knowledge about an adversary obtained through observation, investigation, analysis, or understanding. (U.S. Joint Forces Command)

Intelligence Collection Plan - (DOD) A plan for gathering information from all available sources to meet an intelligence requirement. Specifically, a logical plan for transforming the essential elements of information into orders or requests to sources within a required time limit.

Intelligence Cycle - (DOD) The process by which information is converted into intelligence and made available to users. There are six phases in the cycle: a. planning and direction-Determination of intelligence requirements, development of appropriate intelligence architecture, preparation of a collection plan, and issuance of orders and requests to information collection agencies. b. collection-Acquisition of information and the provision of this information to processing elements. c. processing and exploitation-Conversion of collected information into forms suitable to the production of intelligence. d. analysis and production-Conversion of processed information into intelligence through the integration, analysis, evaluation, and interpretation of all source data and the preparation of intelligence products in support of known or anticipated user requirements. e. dissemination and integration-Delivery of intelligence to users in a suitable form and the application of the intelligence to appropriate missions, tasks, and functions. f. evaluation and feedback-Continuous assessment of intelligence operations during each phase of the intelligence cycle to ensure that the commander's intelligence requirements are being met.

Intelligence Estimate - (DOD, NATO) The appraisal, expressed in writing or orally, of available intelligence relating to a specific situation or condition with a view to determining the courses of action open to the enemy or potential enemy and the order of probability of their adoption.

Intelligence Operations - (DOD) The variety of intelligence tasks that are carried out by various intelligence organizations and activities. Predominantly, it refers to either intelligence collection or intelligence production activities. When used in the context of intelligence collection activities, intelligence operations refer to collection, processing, exploitation, and reporting of information. When used in the context of intelligence production activities, it refers to collation, integration, interpretation, and analysis, leading to the dissemination of a finished product.

Intelligence Preparation of the Battlespace - (DOD) An analytical methodology employed to reduce uncertainties concerning the enemy, environment, and terrain for all types of operations. Intelligence preparation of the battlespace builds an extensive database for each potential area in which a unit may be required to operate. The database is then analyzed in detail to determine the impact of the enemy, environment, and terrain on operations and presents it in graphic form. Intelligence preparation of the battlespace is a continuing process. Also called IPB.



'With advance information, costly mistake can be avoided, destruction averted, and the way to lasting victory made clear.'

Sun Tzu

FM 2-0 - Intelligence Support to IO FM 2-0:

'All-source intelligence support, encompassing all of its forms, is the principal enabler for successful IO. The commander’s capability to synchronize military operations can be heavily influenced by the ability to identify the threat and understand the adversary’s capabilities and intentions in the information environment.'

Essential Documents

United States

pdf 2007 National Counterintelligence Strategy [1.8 MB], Office of the Director of National Intelligence, March 2007

The National Intelligence Strategy of the United States of America, Office of the Director of National Intelligence, October 2005

'George W. Bush, President of the United States, approved the first National Counterintelligence Strategy of the United States. This historic plan, developed under the purview of the National Counterintelligence Executive, will transform the way we conduct counterintelligence as an instrument of national policy.' March 2005

Joint and National Intelligence Support to Military Operations [3.3 MB], Joint Chiefs of Staff, October 2004

Executive Order Strengthened Management of the Intelligence Community, August 2004

Executive Order National Counterterrorism Center, August 2004

Executive Order Strengthening the Sharing of Terrorism Information to Protect Americans , August 2004

FM 2-0 Intelligence [3 MB], UA Army, May 2004

Congressional Reports: Joint Inquiry into Intelligence Community Activities before and after the Terrorist Attacks of September 11, 2001, July 2003

Factbook on Intelligence, CIA

Central Intelligence: Origin and Evolution, Center for the Study of Intelligence, 2001

The NRO at Forty: Ensuring Global Information Supremacy by R. Cargill Hall

US Defense and Intelligence Abbreviations and Acronyms November 1997 DVP-2600-1828-97, Joint Military Intelligence College

National Security Act of 1947 mandated a major reorganization of the foreign policy and military establishments of the U.S. Government. The act created many of the institutions that Presidents found useful when formulating and implementing foreign policy, including the National Security Council (NSC). It transformed the wartime Office of Strategic Services into the Central Intelligence Agency.

United Kingdom & Europe

Intelligence, counter-terrorism and trust, address to the Society of Editors by the Director General of the Security Service, 5 November 2007

The Government published it's response to the Intelligence and Security Committee's annual report for 2003-2004 on 6 July. In it, the Government addresses the ISC's conclusions and recommendations on the expenditure, administration and policies of the UK's three intelligence and security agencies: the Security Service, the Secret Intelligence Service, and the Government Communications Headquarters.

ISC Annual Report - the Intelligence and Security Committee (ISC) published it's third annual report for the period of May 2003 to May 2004 on 29 June. The ISC was established under the Intelligence Services Act 1994 to examine expenditure, administration and policy of the UK's three intelligence agencies. In addition to it's conclusions and recommendations, the report highlights the agencies' successes in the past year.

The UK National Intelligence Machinery - the UK Intelligence and Security Agencies, 2000

European Parliament Interception Capabilities 2000 Report
 the STOA report is, a very good technical description of US interception capabilities



Intelligence Reform Hearing, Senate Select Committee on Intelligence 18 August 2004

9/11 Commission Recommendations: Counterterrorism Analysis and Collection—The Requirement for Imagination and Creativity, House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence, 04 August 2004

Reform and Reorganization of the U.S. Intelligence Community Hearing, Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, 20 July 2004

Operation Iraqi fredom and the Challenges to Intelligence - Keeping Pace with the Revolution in Military Affairs by William Nolte, Journal of Intelligence Vol 1 2004

Testimony on defense intelligence programs and lessons learned in recent military operation, Senate Committee on Armed Services, 7. April 2004

Bush announces formation of independent commission to look at US intelligence, White House, February 2004

The Need for Intelligence Reform Part I to III, Senator Graham

Developing a Taxonomy of Intelligence Analysis Variables - Studies in Intelligence, VOL. 47, NO. 3, 2003

Intelligence in the Internet Era -
Studies in Intelligence, VOL. 47, NO. 3, 2003

Domestic Intelligence in the United Kingdom: Applicability of the MI-5 Model to the United States, Congressional Research Service ˜ The Library of Congress, May 19, 2003

Army Vision 2010: Integrating Measurement and Signature Intelligence [MASINT] by John W. Ives, Strategy Research Project, April 2002

Artificial Intelligence’s Role in Advancing the National Imagery and Mapping Agency (NIMA) by Ms. Pamela Jackson, Strategy Research Project, April 2002

Tannenberg: The First Use Of Signals Intelligence In Modern Warfare [1.4 MB] by Frederick E. Jackson, Strategy Research Project, April 2002

Market Garden: Was Intelligence Responsible for the Failure?
by Lt Col Philip G. Bradley, April 2001

Center of Gravity Analysis: Preparing for Intelligent Agents by Lieutenant Colonel Michael Bowman, Strategy Research Project, February 2001

A Brief Look at the Echelon System - and the proposed South African Look Alike a good short introduction to Echelon 

'The 'Carnivore' Controversy: Electronic Surveillance and Privacy in the Digital Age' Hearing Before the Committee on the Judiciary United States Senate on 6. September 2000.

Statement for the Record of NSA Director Lt. General Michael V. Hayden, USAF for the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence on the 12. April 2000, Powerpoint presentation (12 MB)

Lt Gen Michael V. Hayden, USAF, Director, National Security Agency Address to Kennedy Political Union of American University on the 17 February 2000

An Appraisal of Technologies of Political Control by STOA

Geheimdienstarbeit in Zeiten privater Datenquellen von Ralf Bendrath


Counter-Bioterrorism: U.S. Intelligence Challenges by Howard Kirk Mardis, Lt Col, USAF, April 2002

The 10 Commandments of Counterintelligence, Office of the National Counterintelligence Executive, January 2001

FBI Intelligence Investigations: Coordination Within Justice on Counterintelligence Criminal Matters Is Limited [0.5 MB] GAO-01-780, July 16 2001.


Eyes in the Sky: In Service of Humanity? By Bjørn Willum, freelance journalist specialising in international conflicts, including remote sensing, Copenhagen, Denmark [September 2000]

Human Rights Abuses Monitored Satellite Imagery - Myth or Reality MA dissertation by Bjørn Willum

Commercial Satellites: Future Threats or Allies? by Lieutenant Commander J. Todd Black, U.S. Navy Naval War College Review Winter 1999



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Canadian Secret Intelligence Service
'CSIS is a government agency dedicated to protecting the national security interests of Canada and safeguarding its citizens. The main objective of the Service is to investigate and report on threats to the security of Canada, an objective that it pursues while respecting the law and protecting human rights. CSIS is unique in its role as the Government of Canada’s principal advisor on national security.'

National Security Agency
'The NSA is the Nation's cryptologic organization. It coordinates, directs, and performs highly specialized activities to protect U.S. information systems and produce foreign intelligence information. A high technology organization, NSA is on the frontiers of communications and data processing. It is also one of the most important centers of foreign language analysis and research within the Government.'

UK Government Communications Headquarters 'In business, knowledge is power. For GCHQ it's vastly more important. Knowledge ensures our nation's security, economic well-being and protection against serious crime. From our predecessor's code breaking triumphs in World War 2 to providing intelligence in today's climate of regional instabilities - GCHQ has a history of employing the brightest and best. The most analytical, lateral minds, working on more challenging, rewarding - and important - tasks than are available virtually anywhere else.'

NGOs & Others

AFIO - Association of Former Intelligence Officers 'AFIO fosters -- through educational programs and publications -- public understanding of the role and importance of intelligence and the need for a strong and healthy U.S. Intelligence / Counter-intelligence capability to protect U.S. citizens, to serve U.S. national interests, and for world stability. AFIO provides a venue for applying independent, seasoned professional expertise and perspectives to historic, current, and future national, corporate and public security issues.'

Echelon Watch
'Echelon is perhaps the most powerful intelligence gathering organization in the world. Several credible reports that suggest that this global electronic communications surveillance system presents an extreme threat to the privacy of people all over the world. According to these reports, ECHELON attempts to capture staggering volumes of satellite, microwave, cellular and fiber-optic traffic, including communications to and from North America. This vast quantity of voice and data communications are then processed through sophisticated filtering technologies.
This site is designed to encourage public discussion of this potential threat to civil liberties, and to urge the governments of the world to protect our rights.'


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