Sunday, July 6, 2014

The open source revolution is coming and it will conquer the 1% - says ex CIA spy

A businessman tries to break through a line of Occupy Wall Street protesters
 who had blocked access to the New York Stock Exchange area in November
 2011. Photograph: Don Emmert/AFP/Getty Images
Open Source is a powerful concept, its given us Wikipedia and the computer operating system Linux. Its not without flaws however. In my discussions with Caleb, we discussed how frequently open source software encryption and networking software has been compromised by intelligence agencies because while the source code can be inspected by anyone, in truth it often isn't, because that takes constant work and vigilance, and people tend towards being lazy unless there's value in not being lazy. So we see many cases of where code has been injected into open source networking software to introduce vulnerabilities such in Open VPN. Where in the case of commercial software vendors they are often paid directly to introduce such vulnerabilities, but at least can be publicly embarrassed when exposed by researchers.

In the case of Wikipedia, various companies have arisen that remove data from Wikipedia by cleverly using multiple IDs to make it look like a consensus has been reached about data in a Wikipedia article when in fact it is one group trying to remove data or inject false or sanitized data on a subject or person.  

These are not insurmountable issues, but it requires a means to identify people more accurately when it comes to being responsible for data stewardship, and to create value incentives for maintaining and inspecting Open Source code, designs and data for accuracy and removal of  flaws.  Open Source is still an evolving concept.  But it can be quite useful tool in expanding the general wealth of all humanity.   -AK


The open source revolution is coming and it will conquer the 1% - ex CIA spy

The man who trained more than 66 countries in open source methods calls for re-invention of intelligence to re-engineer Earth

Robert David Steele, former Marine, CIA case officer, and US co-founder of the US Marine Corps intelligence activity, is a man on a mission. But it's a mission that frightens the US intelligence establishment to its core.
With 18 years experience working across the US intelligence community, followed by 20 more years in commercial intelligence and training, Steele's exemplary career has spanned almost all areas of both the clandestine world.

Steele started off as a Marine Corps infantry and intelligence officer. After four years on active duty, he joined the CIA for about a decade before co-founding the Marine Corps Intelligence Activity, where he was deputy director. Widely recognized as the leader of the Open Source Intelligence (OSINT) paradigm, Steele went on to write the handbooks on OSINT for NATO, the US Defense Intelligence Agency and the U.S. Special Operations Forces. In passing, he personally trained 7,500 officers from over 66 countries.

In 1992, despite opposition from the CIA, he obtained Marine Corps permission to organise a landmark international conference on open source intelligence – the paradigm of deriving information to support policy decisions not through secret activities, but from open public sources available to all. The conference was such a success it brought in over 620 attendees from the intelligence world.

But the CIA wasn't happy, and ensured that Steele was prohibited from running a second conference. The clash prompted him to resign from his position as second-ranking civilian in Marine Corps intelligence, and pursue the open source paradigm elsewhere. He went on to found and head up the Open Source Solutions Network Inc. and later the non-profit Earth Intelligence Network which runs the Public Intelligence Blog.

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