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    Intelligence Reporting and Security Essay

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    30 March 2002INTELLIGENCE REPORTING AND SECURITYIntelligence report writing takes a lot of preparation before finalizing or conducting a brief. There are many different techniques that can be used to present information that has been discovered during an intelligence investigation.

    Various charts can be used to analyze the timelines, criminal activities, financial activities, or biographical profiles to prove or disprove lawful conduct of the individual or the organization. The activity flow chart shows the different steps that have been taken in a complex operation. By breaking the steps down, it becomes easier for the analyst and law enforcement organizations to identify the misconduct of a complicated operation. The activity flow chart is also used along with other charts to help further demonstrate probable activity. Assessments are made after and during a strategic investigation.

    These assessments help to move from a broad or well-defined position and further investigate closer to the source(s). There are two types of assessments: General and Specific. A general assessment provides an overview while a specific assessment can disclose threats and vulnerabilities. An Association analysis is used to show the relationships between people, groups, or organizations to show criminal or non-criminal activity.

    The association matrix is used as an interim product that includes police reports, surveillance reports, field interviews, corporate records, testimony, informant data, public record data, and other information. The association analysis can be used to indicate other possible criminal activity. The association chart is used in conjunction with the association analysis to depict relationships. The way that the chart is used can provide new information about a network or the operational mode of a conspiracy.

    In order to interpret the association chart, a few mechanisms must be understood. First, the person in the center of the chart may not be the head of the criminal activity or conspiracy. More likely than not, this person may merely be the easiest person to contact and track by the analyst. Second, the association chart is only a snapshot and relationships may change from day to day.

    An association matrix is chart made up of rows and columns depicting every relationship that an individual has. Information is taken from investigative reports, public records, and testimony. Each person that is associated will also have as many known other relationships as well. Another type of an analysis that can be utilized is the bank record analysis. This is simply following the money trail and tracking how much money is being spent.

    The money that is spent can lead directly to other entities that may need to be uncovered in order to draw a clear picture about a criminal activity. This type of analysis can uncover illegal income, skimming, business fraud, or money laundering. The use of time line events is also very helpful in drawing a picture of activities occurring over a period of time. There are a couple of ways to use a timeline. One can be used to judge an individuals or an organizations criminal activity from day to day and another can be used to demonstrate a pattern in an area of similar criminal activity.

    The latter can be used to assess the threat or vulnerability of a particular area. The telephone record analysis is used to find out more information about whom the suspect is contacting. The data can be generated from telephone bills or non-audio wire intercepts (dialed numbered recorders or pen registers). A dialed number recorder (DNR) machine will provide information on all the numbers that are a made from a telephone line. Keeping track of the calls made from known criminals can open doors to finding out new unknown conspirators.

    A telephone record chart is a tool used to visually see all of the calls made from one or several lines. Many times, several telephone records will be obtained to demonstrate the back and forth telephone calls as well as calls made to other sources. The visual chart is easier to understand than sheets of typed information and should be analyzed to determine its meaning. These are only a few of the examples of how different investigative techniques can be presented.

    There are many other charts that can depict different types of activities, like commodity flow. One of the most difficult tasks belongs to the investigator and the analyst, often times the same person. Keeping track of all the information and finding sources to collect from are not easy tasks. Once the investigation has been completed, the report is compiled.

    Included in the report should be, all of the documents that were used in conducting the investigation, whether they had a positive or negative effect on the final hypothesis/conclusion. The best way to guarantee that an intelligence report is complete is to ensure that reader is given all of the facts. The report itself is a direct reflection of the analytical skills. If the report should be well researched, well documented, well written, well organized, and well presented.

    The analyst must remain unbiased during the entire process to ensure that all the facts and information are not polluted. The benefits of an accurate and well-prepared report are plentiful. With good reporting, the agency benefits not just from credibility among other law enforcement agencies and the intelligence staff but better financing and budget allocation as well. If the report gives plenty of detailed information, money will be allocated to where it needs to be without any waste. Other benefits include improved training of individuals affected, refocus of the intelligence collection efforts of an agency, enhancement of community liaison and improve relations, providing the basis for intelligence sharing with other agencies and accurate development of cases or operations, and issues of Officer Safety addressed. There are many elements involved in filing a good report to enhance maximum benefits.

    Probably the most important element of a good report is the content. The content answers the questions of who, what, where, and when. The questions of how and why should be answered only if requested, this will keep the analyst unbiased. The content should include all information known as well as the disclosure of information that is not known. Research is another element that should always be accomplished prior to completing a report. Information is everywhere, through open-source or by means of collecting classified information.

    During the research element, all items within the report should be identified. Any item that is not identified should be listed as well, and this will help other agencies in their research as well. Data Collation is basically a database. By creating a coherent database, your agency as well as others will be able to call up information that has already been process in previous intelligence reports. This will save time and money for you and for all. The writing and editing element is the most difficult portion of the report.

    This is essentially putting all the information that has been found into a readable format and making it as easy as possible to understand. There should always be another set of eyes to proof read or edit the report before it is disseminated. Other elements that are part of a report are the graphics, legal review, management approval, publication logistics, dissemination requirements and follow-up after publication. A good report should encompass a combination of all the elements listed above in order to ensure that a comprehensible and complete report is submitted.

    The basic principles of good report writing include accuracy, brevity, and completeness. In a tactical situation, when a report must be given immediately, the oral briefing is used. The three keys to giving a good oral report are be brief, know your material, and answer question fully yet succinctly. Giving a report orally is not an easy task and there are many limits that must be established in order to give a thorough briefing. Some guidelines for an oral report are find out how much time is allotted, identify the audience, plan the brief, choose the key points, develop graphics for presentation, memorize sources/documentation for material in visuals, develop potential questions, and practice. The three keys mentioned above along with the guidelines will enable any analyst to give an oral report that will not put the audience to sleep.

    Probably the most important guideline is to identify the audience. You will not be able to talk about the physics involved with the analysis to a group of street cops, therefore you will have to keep the information basic as long as you make your point and dont leave anything out. Security surrounds the intelligence process. There are many different types of security, the first being operations security.

    Operations security is the controlling of any facts about an operation/activity to avoid compromising the entire operation. The steps that can be reviewed prior to or during the planning of a law enforcement operation are identifying critical information, conducting a threat analysis, performing a vulnerability analysis, applying countermeasures. A countermeasure is anything that is done to counter the adversarys ability to access or exploit your information. One-way to compromise an entire operation is to disclose just a little bit of information about it.

    If you tell a little and someone else says a little and another leaks a little, then the entire operation will be known if the wrong person puts it all together. The best way to avoid an operation being compromised is to not leak anything at all. The role of counterintelligence in law enforcement is to implement countermeasures and to try and find out what the criminal may or may not know about any operation. The counterintelligence officer is basically the checks and balances of the agency.

    Their job is to keep the agency from compromising information as well as obtaining as much intelligence about the adversarys knowledge as well. Communication security involves cryptography, transmission security, etc; and physical security is the actual gate guard and physical barriers that block unclassified personnel from obtaining any information. The use of documents security is another way to ensure that unclassified personnel are aware that the item that they may be trying to look at is classified, and all classified items should be clearly marked in order to avoid any confusion. Intelligence reporting and security are not simple tasks and do deserve a lot of attention.

    In order for information to be reported correctly it must be researched/collected and analyzed with an unbiased eye. A lot of times an investigator has a sole purpose of convicting a suspect, whereas the analyst has a sole purpose of getting and relaying as much information about a subject as possible. The analyst must keep in mind that all facts should be disclosed to appropriate personnel and after processed, protected from anyone that does not have the need or the right to know. SOURCES USEDLowenthall, M. M.


    Westport,CT: Praeger Publishers, 1998. (Chap 2 and 3)Peterson, M. B. INTELLIGENCE 2000: REVISING THE BASICELEMENTS. Sacramento, CA: LEIU, 2000.

    (Chap 9 and 12)Sulc, L. B. LAW ENFORCEMENT: COUNTER INTELLIGENCE. ShawneeMission, KS: Varro Press, 1996. (Part 1 Section 1, Part 2Section 10, Appx A)

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