Thursday, October 27, 2016

Local Analyst Briefs Highest Level of Intelligence Community on ISIL Finances

Last month, an intelligence analyst with the Colorado Information Analysis Center (CIAC) traveled to Virginia to brief senior national intelligence officials on behalf of a national team of public- and private-sector experts convened by the federal Department of Homeland Security and the Office of the Director of National Intelligence (ODNI).

The work she and her team performed may assist the U.S. in its strategic campaign against the terrorist organization known as ISIL, and may even end up being used by U.S. allies such the United Kingdom, Australia, New Zealand and Canada.

Although we would love to recognize her publicly, she has asked not to have her name used due to her work in the intelligence realm.

The analyst, who works out of the CIAC offices in Lakewood, was one of just two state-level analysts in the entire country to participate in the Homeland Security/ODNI Private Sector Analytical Exchange Program during fiscal year 2015-2016. The Analytical Exchange program convenes interdisciplinary teams of subject matter experts from all over the country and all sectors – business, law enforcement, banking, media, even the arts – to tackle specific national security questions.

“They start with a key question, and then seek the answer,” she said.

 The analyst applied to be part of the team and was accepted to the program. At the outset of the program, the team was asked to examine financial frameworks for ISIL. Due to the evolving nature of ISIL, the team designed a future scenarios model, focusing on how finance underpins three plausible future scenarios over the next three to five years.

The CIAC analyst represented the team in presenting their framework at the highest level of the Intelligence Community on Sept. 9, 2016. Further, the futures analysis was sent to the Commander of US Special Operations Command, who reviewed the product and requested that the framework be briefed to the Five Eyes (FVEY- Australia, Canada, New Zealand, UK, US).

“It’s been better received and more widely utilized than we ever imagined,” the analyst said. She added: “It’s really exciting for me on a personal level -- and to represent the state of Colorado with something like this, it’s just awesome.”

CIAC is a fusion center that is housed within the Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Management (DHSEM).

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