Analyst on board to deliver intelligence

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Monday, April 27, 2009

ALEXANDRIA, Va.--In an effort to improve intelligence gathering and sharing between local private and public entities, the ASIS Foundation, in conjunction with the Illinois Law Enforcement Alarm System, announced on April 21 it has raised funds to hire an analyst to work in the Illinois Statewide Terrorism and Intelligence Fusion Center. The analyst will work to deliver intelligence relevant to the private sector.

Robert Rowe, vice president of research and development for ASIS, said this initiative began because of the increasing difficulties private organizations reported in receiving intelligence from the public sector. Private companies that can afford to dedicate personnel and resources to intelligence gathering efforts are often working independently and do not share information with other entities, private or public, he said.

Fusion centers, which began after 9/11 and now number approximately 57 throughout the country, are intended to be hubs for coordinating and distributing intelligence information to federal and state agencies, but do not tend to focus on the private sector. The Illinois STIC is the first fusion center to have a position funded by the private sector to focus on intelligence gathering. The foundation began fundraising efforts in August 2008 and all the money raised came from private companies in Illinois, many of which are members of ASIS.

"The biggest element of a partnership between private and public is not the response or resources; intelligence gathering is the key thing," said Rowe.

While the position has not yet been filled, the person selected will be charged with receiving, analyzing and distributing intelligence information received from local, state and federal levels and distribute it to those in the private sector.

Rowe said information will be better coordinated at the fusion level than locally or within an organization and said he hopes this will be replicated at other fusion centers across the country.