Robert David Steele, curator of Phi Beta Iota, former CIA clandestine services cases officer and creator of the Marine Corps Intelligence Activity, talks about Open Source Intelligence, a movement that he started in 1988, and his recent book, the Open Source Everything Manifesto.
Steele found that close to 90% of the needed relevant information for government operations and decision-support is available from public sources in 183 languages, but not collected, processed, or analyzed by the structured official intelligence community. He realized that embracing the open source community allows for greater exchange of information and more efficient use of taxpayer funds.
Open Source provides a platform that is affordable, interoperable, and scalable. Steele contends that secrets are not the same as knowledge, and that the Open Source Approach will help to curtail government waste relating to the desire to collection for the sake of collection.
In Steele’s contribution to the Routledge Companion to Intelligence Studies, entitled “The Evolving Craft of Intelligence,” he discusses the way to create an effective intelligence and counter intelligence service. The new paradigm would focus the United States Intelligence Community on catching traitors and providing decisions support as well as holistic analytics centered around the 10 High Level Threats to Humanity.
Through his discussion with Michael Ostrolenk Steele explains how using common sense and open source techniques, the U.S. Government can adopt proven methods in the field by Steele over 25 years ago to have a leaner, more effective, more efficient, and more transparent intelligence Community.