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Special Report

Next Generation End-to-End Recording Solutions

End to End Recording The Data Deluge: Trend and Developments Harnessing a Flood of Data to a Purpose The Electronic Battlefield: Recording in Action The Future of Recording: Optimising Data Handling Sponsored by

Published by Global Business Media


SPECIAL REPORT: NEXT GENERATION END-TO-END RECORDING SOLUTIONS

SPECIAL REPORT

Next Generation End-to-End Recording Solutions

Contents Foreword

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Mary Dub, Editor End to End Recording The Data Deluge: Trend and Developments Harnessing a Flood of Data to a Purpose The Electronic Battlefield: Recording in Action The Future of Recording: Optimising Data Handling Sponsored by

Published by Global Business Media

Published by Global Business Media Global Business Media Limited 62 The Street Ashtead Surrey KT21 1AT United Kingdom Switchboard: +44 (0)1737 850 939 Fax: +44 (0)1737 851 952 Email: info@globalbusinessmedia.org Website: www.globalbusinessmedia.org Publisher Kevin Bell Business Development Director Marie-Anne Brooks Editor Mary Dub Senior Project Manager Steve Banks Advertising Executives Michael McCarthy Abigail Coombes Production Manager Paul Davies For further information visit: www.globalbusinessmedia.org The opinions and views expressed in the editorial content in this publication are those of the authors alone and do not necessarily represent the views of any organisation with which they may be associated. Material in advertisements and promotional features may be considered to represent the views of the advertisers and promoters. The views and opinions expressed in this publication do not necessarily express the views of the Publishers or the Editor. While every care has been taken in the preparation of this publication, neither the Publishers nor the Editor are responsible for such opinions and views or for any inaccuracies in the articles.

© 2013. The entire contents of this publication are protected by copyright. Full details are available from the Publishers. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic, mechanical photocopying, recording or otherwise, without the prior permission of the copyright owner.

End to End Recording

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Ultra Electronics Network Analytics

Why Record? What to Record How to Process The Future

The Data Deluge: Trend and Developments

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Don McBarnet, Staff Writer

Why is Intelligence Data such a Controversial Topic? But the Path to Producing Better, More Timely, More Apposite Intelligence from the Data Available Proved Difficult The Distinction Between Intelligence Data Handling Techniques for Counter Terrorism and Counter Insurgency The Failure of Good Intelligence in Iraq

Harnessing a Flood of Data to a Purpose

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Mary Dub, Editor

The Data Management Lessons From the Operation Unified Protector in Libya So What Intelligence Does the Military Commander on the Ground in Afghanistan or on an Intervention Campaign Need? The Importance of ‘Why?’

The Electronic Battlefield: Recording in Action

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Don McBarnet, Staff Writer

Recording Military Plane Movements and Air Traffic Control Becomes a 21st century ICAO (International Civil Aviation Organisation) Requirement Complying with New Air Traffic Control Regulations from 1 January 2012 21st Century Solutions to 21st Century Problems and the Future? The Rising Global Demand for Data Recording Systems in the Face of the Data Deluge

The Future of Recording: Optimising Data Handling

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Don McBarnet, Staff Writer

The New System Under Test Unlocking the Power of Inference Stripping away Obfuscation The Challenge to Make the Right Inference The Importance of Data Handling and Retrieval

References 14

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SPECIAL REPORT: NEXT GENERATION END-TO-END RECORDING SOLUTIONS

Foreword T

his Special Report on end-to-end recording

that intelligence and other data has been assessed in

software is written at a time of rapid change in

the field of intelligence has been, and in some ways

the field of data handling. It has become a cliché

still is, a hot political issue in the United States, after

of the digital battlefield that dealing with the data

9/11 and the Iraq war. The attempts to work through

deluge is one of the key impediments to clear

and around the problem of listening to, retrieving and

thinking and rapid assimilation of new and changing

making sense of the data available often in ‘difficult

information. This can be as much an issue for an

to the United States’ foreign languages is still taxing.

air accident board investigator looking to retrieve

Yet despite the passage of more than a decade

data on the circumstances of a near miss of civilian

the issue of the acquisition of good ISR (Intelligence,

aircraft in an airport as it is for a commander on

Surveillance and Reconnaissance) information and

operation in Afghanistan trying to piece together

its appropriate analysis is still an issue as the third

the analyst’s morning Priority Intelligence Report.

article demonstrates.

The opening article in the Report describes the

The fourth piece, reviews case studies on how

concept of end-to-end recording and examines why

end-to-end recording has upgraded British Ministry

recordings are carried out, what to record and how to

of Defence operations and helped revolutionise

process the recordings once they have been made.

the recording of Air Traffic Control in Europe and

The article goes on to describe the various forms

South America.

of data analysis tools that are available to process

The future is the subject of the final piece. The work

material, from the most simple replaying of an audio

of DARPA in developing new ways to think about the

or video clip to the complex integration of data with

process of recording and analysing large quantities

an end user’s existing system, through an API or web

of information so that it can be used for intelligence,

interface, and concludes that, while these tools will

counter terrorism or counter insurgency will always

never replace skilled human analysts, they can make

be helpful. Quite how all or some of the research will

human resources more effective.

be used in the future is something only time will tell.

The second piece looks at how serious the data deluge has become in the military sphere, and how the mishandling or misjudging of information can lead to serious error and the loss of civilian life. The way

Mary Dub Editor

Mary Dub has covered the defence field in the United States and the UK as a television broadcaster, journalist and conference manager.

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SPECIAL REPORT: NEXT GENERATION END-TO-END RECORDING SOLUTIONS

End to End Recording Ultra Electronics Network Analytics

Intuitive record and replay GUI

T

o examine the concept of end-to-end recording, we must ask ourselves the three key questions: why, what and how? We have to examine the reasons for recording, the nature of data to be recorded as well as the technologies available.

Why Record? There are a number of reasons for recording data: • Obliged by law – Air Traffic Control • Defence against false allegation • Reporting on incidents • Training of staff • Intelligence analysis • Establish relationships between targets • Provision of evidence The key point is that there are many reasons to record data, but whatever these may be, this must be done so that a useable product can be obtained at the other end.

What to Record The reason why we record is probably the most important factor in deciding what to record and how to process it once recorded. For a police interview, recording two channels of simple audio from a microphone may suffice, whereas for a complex air accident incident reconstruction, multiple forms of data may be required. Commonly recorded data types, which do have areas of overlap, include:

• Audio – Analogue, E1/T1, VoIP, handsets etc • Video – Analogue or IP CCTV •W  orkstation/Operator Position – Screen recordings, keyboard and mouse, ambient audio •R  adar – Plot extracted data on sync serial or network feeds, raw video and azimuth •N  etwork – Audio, video, radar, internet, intranet, social media, web traffic, e-mail etc •C  ontrols – Motors, vibration sensors, load cells, DDS, SCADA etc Once we have chosen what to record, we need to know how long we wish to store the data for, as this determines what storage requirements will be needed. A number of questions come into play on storage. Is the data required to be evidentially proven? Can compression be used? How much compression can be tolerated? Is fast disk storage required or can tape access be tolerated? Is disaster recovery and redundancy required (RAID configuration)? All of these are vital questions, though recent falls in the price of storage have made this a less tricky question than in the past. A Petabyte of storage can now be available in one 19” rack.

How to Process We know what we recorded and why we did it, but there must be a clear understanding of how we can benefit from this data: www.defenceindustryreports.com | 3


SPECIAL REPORT: NEXT GENERATION END-TO-END RECORDING SOLUTIONS

For a police interview, recording two channels of simple audio from a microphone may suffice, whereas for a complex air accident incident reconstruction, multiple forms of data may be required.

Environmentally qualified recorders for extreme environments

Simple Replay – in many cases, merely replaying a piece of audio or a video clip can be sufficient to reassure us or remind us of the facts. This can include replay of mission data in a tribunal, a disciplinary proceeding or as part of an After Action Review. Often this is all that is needed to prove that what was said or done was as stated. Transcription – Sometimes people require a summary of one or more recordings in a simple textual manner that can be stored on a server, printed, indexed and searched using a variety of tools. This typically involves transcribers playing back one or more audio or video files and either making a verbatim transcript of what was said when, or writing a summary of the conversation or activity. The transcription process can be a simple isolated task where there is one operator on a standalone PC, with a couple of files on a CD. There may, however, be a more complex task with a pool of transcribers and a sophisticated workflow process on a distributed network of clients with centralised storage and integration with business systems, such as Active Directory, to define roles for people within the record, transcribe or quality check and manage groups. Incident Reconstruction – This is a step further than simple replay of a few channels and involves the seamless and synchronous replay of a number of channels of mixed data types. For example, incident reconstruction for an ATC near miss might involve the synchronous replay of numerous analogue audio channels, E1 telephone calls, plot extracted network radar data and some operator screens. By hearing all the audio sources played back at the appropriate moment, in conjunction with seeing the operators’ control screens and analysing what was present in the radar data, the investigator has all the information necessary to perform a detailed investigation into the events that occurred.

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A similar process can be deployed to investigate military incidents. When deployed, whole Operations Rooms can be recorded (voice comms, FMV from downlinks, static FOB cameras etc.) and channels can be played back synchronously. External sources, such as body worn or vehicle mounted cameras, UAV or UGV data, could be added later and integrated in to the database, allowing for complete reconstruction of a significant event. This could be used for investigative or even training purposes. Just imagine military instructors being able to dip into a database of current scenarios from Operations to educate the next crop of officers and soldiers coming though. That would be truly powerful. Integration – In certain instances, such as a Zetron interface or C2 application, it is not desirable to interfere with an operator’s terminal which is running mission specific software. In this case implementing record/replay and similar capabilities through an API or web interface that can be fully integrated with the end user’s existing system becomes a priority. Data Analysis – With the ease of modern recording techniques, and the decrease in price of storage, the tendency is to record more and more data. Whilst this can be beneficial in terms of allowing analysts the complete data set, it can swamp users with huge volumes of calls and other data to wade through. To ease this burden, a number of tools can be available: •S  peaker identification to find known speakers on unknown telephone lines •L  anguage identification to find unexpected languages or conserve precious translation resource •K  ey word spotting to find calls which have interesting content •S  peech to text to automatically create approximate gist of audio data •G  eo-location – display target’s geographical location


SPECIAL REPORT: NEXT GENERATION END-TO-END RECORDING SOLUTIONS

Full Command and Control Centre data recording

•N  etwork graphs – show interactions between targets such as telephone calls, emails and social media etc •B  rowser reconstruction – recreate pages browsed by targets to allow non-network specialist analysts to make quick judgements These tools will never replace skilled human analysts, but can make the human resources more effective, particularly if used as a triage type tool to concentrate human activity on the most important calls, whether they are a customer threatening to close his account or a terrorist arranging a covert meeting. To aid operators’ interactions with such systems, and to enable them to be managed in a proper manner, they need a number of features beyond the basic analysis and display tools. These include security systems to prevent unauthorised persons using the tools and audit trails to allow monitoring of the system’s use. Additionally, management tools are required to allow setup of recorders, configuration of storage and to monitor the health of the system. To aid the analysts, alarms can be created which alert users on particular speakers, languages or key words etc. Transcription tools with templates pre-populated with metadata aid in the creation of interview records, case notes or intelligence reports.

The Future In this age of data proliferation, where the battlefield is inherently electronic, a vast amount of extremely valuable information is simply lost. In rare cases where isolated systems do record aspects of mission data, they are often recorded for the sake of being recording, and no real value is gained. It is even less common for these sources of data to be fused with other sources, to generate a significantly

With the ease of modern recording techniques, and the decrease in price of storage, the tendency is to record more and more data.

richer understanding of what has happened, which would in turn lead to greater situational awareness and help to inform the decisionmaking process. The challenge is to ensure that maximum value is gained from recorded events, and this can only achieved by employing a unified data management system that can store, quickly search and replay this disparate array of precious information. We fight in a 360° environment and our approach to capturing and studying it should reflect this. www.defenceindustryreports.com | 5


SPECIAL REPORT: NEXT GENERATION END-TO-END RECORDING SOLUTIONS

The Data Deluge: Trend and Developments Don McBarnet, Staff Writer “The intensity of warfare in the computer age is on display at a secret intelligence and surveillance installation at Langley Air Force Base in Virginia, a massive, heavily air- conditioned warehouse where hundreds of TVs hang from black rafters. Every day across the Air Force’s $5 billion global surveillance network, cubicle warriors review 1,000 hours of video, 1,000 high-altitude spy photos and hundreds of hours of “signals intelligence” – usually cell phone calls.1” The New York Times January 16 2011

Intelligence collection systems are expensive and some critics suggest there have been elements of waste and unneeded duplication of effort while some intelligence “targets” have been neglected.

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ne of the unintended consequences of the 21st century digital battlefield is a high demand for intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance data as well as a rising level of difficulty in dealing with the data and using it to add value when it has been assembled. Without access to classified sources, this Special Report is going to look at how this has come about, why it is happening and what software manufacturers are doing to solve some of the issues data analysts are facing. Benjamin Cutler at DARPA restates this in more formal military terms: today’s military intelligence analysts are faced with the monumental and escalating task of handling massive volumes of complex data from multiple intelligence (multi-INT) sources and types. All of this data must be evaluated, correlated and ultimately used to support a commander’s time-critical decisions and actions. To enhance analysts’ ability to more effectively and efficiently process information, DARPA’s Insight program seeks to develop an adaptable, integrated human-machine Exploitation and Resource Management (E&RM) System.2 Above all, the goal of the system as ever is to enable analysts to visualize information from multiple perspectives in such a way that it is readily discoverable, accessible, meaningful and useful.

Why is Intelligence Data such a Controversial Topic? How intelligence data is used has significant consequences for the demand for data handling and recording software. So it is useful to review the sequence of events from an American perspective (since intelligence was successful in being aware of the heightened risk, but failed to prevent the attack on the United States 11 September 2001). In an analysis for Congress, 6 | www.defenceindustryreports.com

Richard A. Best takes up the tale. To address the challenges facing the U.S. intelligence community in the 21st century, congressional and executive branch initiatives have sought to improve coordination among the different agencies and to encourage better analysis. In December 2004, the Intelligence Reform and Terrorism Prevention Act (P.L. 108-458) was signed, providing for a Director of National Intelligence (DNI) with substantial authorities to manage the national intelligence effort. The legislation also established a separate Director of the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA).3

But the Path to Producing Better, More Timely, More Apposite Intelligence from the Data Available Proved Difficult Bureaucratic issues, often a problem in the United States and elsewhere, proved a stumbling block. Making cooperation effective presents substantial leadership and managerial challenges. The needs of intelligence “consumers”, ranging from the White House to Cabinet agencies to military commanders, must all be met, using many of the same systems and personnel. Intelligence collection systems are expensive and some critics suggest there have been elements of waste and unneeded duplication of effort while some intelligence “targets” have been neglected.4

The Distinction Between Intelligence Data Handling Techniques for Counter Terrorism and Counter Insurgency The task of counter terrorism agencies is different from the task of providing day-today Priority Intelligence Reports to military commanders on the ground in Afghanistan. The


SPECIAL REPORT: NEXT GENERATION END-TO-END RECORDING SOLUTIONS

task of protecting the United States from terrorist attack demands the mastery of a huge amount of detail while bearing in mind the strategic picture, as the Christmas bomb aboard a plane in 2011 demonstrates. International terrorism, a major threat facing the United States in the 21st century, presents a difficult analytical challenge, vividly demonstrated by the attempted bombing of a commercial aircraft approaching Detroit on December 25, 2009. Counterterrorism requires the close coordination of intelligence and law enforcement agencies, but there remain many institutional and procedural issues that complicate cooperation between the two sets of agencies. Particular challenges relate to the protection of civil liberties that surround collecting information about U.S. persons.5 The challenge for intelligence data analysts is digging deep into highly detailed SIGINT (Signals intelligence) combined with other sources. Techniques for acquiring and analysing information on small groups of plotters differ significantly from those used to evaluate the military capabilities of other countries, with a much higher need for situational awareness of third world societies.

The Failure of Good Intelligence in Iraq Although it is a highly disputed issue, many agree that intelligence on Iraqi weapons of mass destruction was inaccurate and Members (of Congress) have criticized the performance of the intelligence community in regard to current conditions in Afghanistan, Iran, and other areas. Improved analysis, while difficult to mandate, remains a key goal. Better human intelligence, it is widely agreed, is also essential, but very challenging to acquire. And while attempts are made to improve intelligence collection and most importantly its analysis, there has been a strong downward pressure

on budgets. The effort to reduce government expenditures has not neglected the intelligence community. The Administration is considering long-term reductions with an emphasis on potentially redundant information technology systems. There is great concern, however, that any reductions be carefully made to avoid curtailing capabilities that have become integral to military operations and to policymaking in many areas, including counterterrorism and cyber security. The rising threat from cyber attacks is an important and related issue to intelligence data analysis adding to costs by demanding further complexity and encryption to obviate new techniques for accessing, destroying or corrupting information. www.defenceindustryreports.com | 7


SPECIAL REPORT: NEXT GENERATION END-TO-END RECORDING SOLUTIONS

Harnessing a Flood of Data to a Purpose Mary Dub, Editor

there is a need to rethink the types of questions asked by analysts to better fulfil the needs of a Counter insurgency (COIN) commander.

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n an article in Foreign Affairs in 2009, then Secretary of Defence, Robert Gates, made the case for better, faster acquisition of defense materiel especially Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance (ISR) materiel: for far too long there was a belief or a hope that Iraq and Afghanistan were exotic distractions that would be wrapped up relatively soon—the regimes toppled, the insurgencies crushed, the troops brought home. Therefore, we should not spend too much or buy too much equipment not already in our long-range procurement plans or turn our bureaucracies and processes upside down.... As a result of these failed assumptions, the capabilities most urgently needed by our war fighters were for the most part fielded ad hoc and on the fly, developed outside the regular bureaucracy and funded in supplemental legislation that would go away when the wars did—if not sooner. Given the types of situations the United States is likely to face ... the time has come to consider whether the specialized, often relatively low-tech equipment well suited for stability and counterinsurgency missions is also needed. It is time to think hard about how to institutionalize the procurement of such capabilities and get them fielded quickly.6 In this speech, Secretary Gates was addressing issues of defense acquisition in general and not ISR systems in particular. However, it is clear from the text of his speeches and his actions as Defense Secretary that he saw ISR support to war fighters as a major example of the challenge facing policymakers in both the executive branch and Congress. Military operations have increasingly come to depend upon the availability of copious amounts of real-time ISR. As a result of the commitment to Iraq and Afghanistan, requirements for ISR and the actual use of ISR data have grown exponentially in the past decade. This was also illustrated in the recent ad hoc coalition support for Libya in Operation Unified Protector in 2011, when one of the many lessons learned from the operation was the critical importance of ISR resources and their analysis.

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The Data Management Lessons From the Operation Unified Protector in Libya In an article from the Royal United Services Institute, The Political and Military Legacies of the 2011 Libya Campaign, the researchers point out the critical importance of ISR resources and data handling analysis for modern intervention campaigns. The success of this military campaign will likely have an impact on how the UK, and many of its European partners, structure their forces in an era of defence budget austerity. Operations over Libya highlighted the vital necessity of effective battlefield intelligence assets. And not simply in a technical sense: minimising civilian casualties – a sine qua non of political support – demands effective and up-to-date targeting information. Advanced ISTAR assets, therefore, will be essential to both sustain the military effort and the political will behind humanitarian interventions.7

So What Intelligence Does the Military Commander on the Ground in Afghanistan or on an Intervention Campaign Need? Attempting to answer this question is difficult, but many military commanders have been dissatisfied with the type of information they are being given. In an article for Small Wars Journal, Ms. Z. Tenay Guvendiren and Lieutenant Colonel Scott Downey8, formerly of the 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 1st Cavalry Division during Operation Iraqi Freedom 06-08 give their view. They argue that there is a need to rethink the types of questions asked by analysts to better fulfil the needs of a Counter insurgency (COIN) commander. What is the issue as they see it? They give some examples of what they see as bad PIR (Priority Intelligence Reports). These PIR are written for a specific method of attack that a particular insurgent groups is observed to use, and is reactive in nature. These PIR focus on the “What or When?” but does not get to the heart of the issues – the pervasiveness of


SPECIAL REPORT: NEXT GENERATION END-TO-END RECORDING SOLUTIONS

Rapidly identify targets and key information

enemy operations within the Human Terrain. “What is the composition, disposition, and strength of the enemy?” is often followed by the proverbial: “How, when, and where will the enemy attack us?” PIR like these are the first steps in derailing your entire ISR Synchronization process. When we surf the SIPRNET (Secure Internet Protocol Router Network) of units at various echelons in all different theaters of operation, in all sorts of different situations, unfortunately we see examples of PIR like this over and over again.9 The authors also dislike the slightly more proactive ‘Why?’ question: “Who are the enemy operating in our AO?” is the second type of poor PIR we see. Going after the “Who” is more proactive then going after the ‘What” but it still does not get to the heart of the issue.

The Importance of ‘Why?’ They argue for the salient use of the answers to the question “Why?” when assessing intelligence data, as being the overriding element that delivers the kind of information needed in counter insurgency. Imagine, if instead, you figured out

“Why?” one particular insurgent groups chooses to attack the unit (with IEDs in one case), or more importantly, “Why?” the insurgent group has the ability to move freely within the Human Terrain to attack the unit. Wouldn’t this give you much more relevant and actionable answers within a COIN campaign? Imagine again, then if every “Why?” question had multiple answers from multiple LOEs. Wouldn’t some of these answers provide information related to “Who?” is in the insurgent group and “Who?” others provide passive or direct support to them? The beauty of asking “Why?” is that the answers are complex, multi-faceted, and often vary from neighbourhood to neighbourhood and from insurgent group to insurgent group. While there are no correct answers to the question of how an analyst should achieve the best interpretation of the information in front of him, the importance of “Why?” and the acknowledgement of the need for complexity and uniqueness in every situation is a step forward – although analysts are constantly being made to look at different perspectives to elicit the best information.

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SPECIAL REPORT: NEXT GENERATION END-TO-END RECORDING SOLUTIONS

The Electronic Battlefield: Recording in Action Don McBarnet, Staff Writer

There is no longer any need for tapes to be transported or people to travel from one airport to another.

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he classified world of software for the defense market of NATO countries is a closed world. The writer of this report has no access to that information. In the fast changing world of cyber intelligence and defence against cyber attack and cyber disruption, those companies that work closest to Ministries of Defence are a party to the secret information and the governments’ problems in handling the data that is needed for 21st century intelligence. Historically, Ultra was the name of British military decryption of signals intelligence service at Bletchley Park during World War Two. Today, the name is still associated with the handling of intelligence by providing data recording software to the British Ministry of Defence among others. In 1999 Audiosoft, now part of Ultra Electronics AudioSoft, won a contract to upgrade the British Ministry of Defence’s voice communication recording procedures within the forces. In the face of mounting maintenance costs of an analogue reel-to-reel system, they bought from Audiosoft a COTS system. This allowed them to update their equipment without long-term allegiance to the manufacturer, or the purchase of expensive bespoke hardware, giving more control and protection against hardware obsolescence. AudioSoft had developed a software package which could be run on any proprietary hardware on multi-channel digital recorders, in the radio rooms of RAF, Naval, Army and Air Defence Ground Environment bases.

Recording Military Plane Movements and Air Traffic Control Becomes a 21st century ICAO (International Civil Aviation Organisation) Requirement Since the turn of the century, radio communication with all British military aircraft has been recorded on the new digital technology. This includes combat planes, air transport, search and rescue aircraft and helicopters from all sites. “As the new technology emerges we will be able to keep pace cost effectively, while enjoying the immediate benefits of dramatically reducing

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our overheads and looking forward to long term savings on maintenance costs. When necessary we can discuss a mid-life upgrade to adapt to new techniques coming on the market” said Brian Fearon, Higher Telecommunications Technical Officer, at RAF Brampton.

Complying with New Air Traffic Control Regulations from 1 January 2012 While military aircraft in the UK and many other countries have had their air traffic control manoeuvres recorded for some time, a new ICAO (International Civil Aviation Organisation) regulation requiring audio recording of all air traffic control instruction came into force at the beginning of 2012. Each recording required accurate stamping of UTC (Coordinated Universal Time) time code. A database of all recordings was required to be saved for a minimum of 30 days and all recordings needed to be fully tamperproof. Users with the appropriate access to the system can replay any airport’s recordings from one of the distributed computers. There is no longer any need for tapes to be transported or people to travel from one airport to another. Interfaces fully support synchronised replay of the audio with other recorded data such as radar and CWP (Central Warning Panel). The system can easily be expanded to support recording of X Server and screen capture of operators’ screens. European countries such as Belgium, for Eurocontrol in Maastricht and South American countries like Uruguay, have installed ICAO compliant end-to-end recording


SPECIAL REPORT: NEXT GENERATION END-TO-END RECORDING SOLUTIONS

devices. These deliver immense data handling capability. As air traffic continues to grow exponentially, flexible and expandable software is needed. In 2002 Eurocontrol handled 1,182,601 flights, the peak day was 27 September, when 3,869 flights were processed through the Centre’s airspace. On average, each operator handled 6,400 flights. The proprietary software installed is well placed to meet the needs of Eurocontrol as volumes of air traffic increase.

21st Century Solutions to 21st Century Problems and the Future?

As air traffic continues to grow exponentially, flexible and expandable software is needed.

Harnessing the data deluge from sophisticated software is becoming the norm in military and civilian contexts, with the given example of air traffic control. The United States Air Force research teams are working on new software and algorithms that confront the issue of recording data from aircraft in flight but also that help analysts, pilots and air traffic controllers to handle, absorb and, if necessary, react to and take decisions about the multitude of inputs that a pilot receives in flight. One of the basic issues is to relieve cognitive overload in dealing with the data deluge problem. The researchers want to shift the emphasis of data analysts from sensing to using information and designing new information systems that are more suitable for different data types.10

The Rising Global Demand for Data Recording Systems in the Face of the Data Deluge While the Western European and NATO, including the United States, markets for many new high technology software products are in recession and facing stringent budget cuts and endless maintenance and repair of legacy systems, the global market, particularly in South America, Central America, the Middle East, North Africa, Australia and Asia is growing at a steady rate. Their rapid uptake of new technologies is providing a growing potential market for those that can look beyond the traditional market of Europe and the United States.

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SPECIAL REPORT: NEXT GENERATION END-TO-END RECORDING SOLUTIONS

The Future of Recording: Optimising Data Handling Don McBarnet, Staff Writer

21st century military intelligence analysts are faced with the monumental and escalating task of handling massive volumes of complex data from multiple intelligence (multi-INT) sources and types.

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ffering insight into the future in a specialist field that is going through a period of exponential growth owing to escalating demand for ways of dealing with the data deluge is bound to be a high risk venture. However, there are strong indicators that the researchers at DARPA the (Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency) will have a better insight than most. Their brief is to maintain the technological superiority of the U.S. military and prevent technological surprise from harming American national security by sponsoring revolutionary, highpayoff research bridging the gap between fundamental discoveries and their military use. They have been at the leading edge of technological discovery for decades. And they are on the case with the development of an Exploitation and Resource Management (E&RM) System, what they see as the next-generation intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance (ISR) system. Why the system, and what does it do? As Benjamin Cutler, the programme manager puts it – 21st century military intelligence analysts are faced with the monumental and escalating task of handling massive volumes of complex data from multiple intelligence (multi-INT) sources and types. All of this data must be evaluated, correlated and ultimately used to support a commander’s time-critical decisions and actions. To enhance analysts’ ability to more effectively and efficiently process information, DARPA’s Insight program seeks to develop an adaptable, integrated human-machine Exploitation and Resource Management (E&RM) System. Through the development of semi- and fully automated technologies, the Insight E&RM System aims to provide the following real-time or nearreal-time capabilities in direct support of tactical users on the battlefield: combination, analysis and exploitation of data and information across multiple sources, including imaging sensors, non-imaging sensors and other sources; efficient management of sensor tasking; and detection and identification of

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threats through the use of behavioural discovery and prediction algorithms.

The New System Under Test The new system was tested with good data, with real-time air and ground-based sensors and intelligence collection activities in the context of realistic military scenarios set against the backdrop of an operationally relevant environment. Further, a field test in February 2012, DARPA says, demonstrated end-to-end system functionality and the capability of the E&RM System to perform sequence-neutral (i.e., out-of-order) fusion of data from multi-INT sources, as well as graphbased multi-INT fusion. The field test also produced a unique, multi-modality, high-fidelity truthed data set, which is available to ISR researchers across the Department of Defense and Intelligence Community. This 135-terabyte handling resource is still on trial, and only time will tell whether it becomes a foundation stone for thinking or software of the future.

Unlocking the Power of Inference In an another perhaps even more challenging program, DEFT (Deep Exploration and Filtering of Text) – an automated deep natural language analysis is seeking to assist war fighters with planning and decision-making by inferring implicit information in text, filtering redundancy and connecting like documents. The aim is to delve out implicit rather than explicitly expressed information that is sometimes deliberately obfuscated. It would be useful where important activities and objects are only indirectly referenced. The aim of this software is to use sophisticated artificial intelligence that has the potential to enable defense analysts to efficiently investigate orders of magnitude more documents so they can discover implicitly expressed, actionable information contained within them.11

Stripping away Obfuscation The DARPA researchers are using contributions from the linguistics and computer science fields in the areas of artificial intelligence, computational


SPECIAL REPORT: NEXT GENERATION END-TO-END RECORDING SOLUTIONS

Capture of all data sources in a single system

linguistics, machine learning, natural-language understanding, discourse and dialogue analysis, and others. They are aiming to help analysts who are overwhelmed by deadlines and the sheer volume of available foreign intelligence. The volume is so great, analysts may miss crucial links, especially when meaning is deliberately concealed or otherwise obfuscated. DEFT is attempting to create technology to make reliable inferences based on basic text. They want the ability to mitigate ambiguity in text by stripping away filters that can cloud meaning and by rejecting false information. To be successful, the technology needs to look beyond what is explicitly expressed in text to infer what is actually meant.

The Challenge to Make the Right Inference To develop the capacity to infer obfuscated meaning in data, would seem like the ultimate technological alchemy, because the discovered obfuscated inference could have a high value or it could simply be wrong. However, the high value in such software would be in its power to spot inference, highlight causal relationships and detect anomalies. The strategic vision for DEFT is, if successful, to allow analysts to move from limited, linear

processing of insurmountable quantities of data to a nuanced, strategic exploration of available information.12

The Importance of Data Handling and Retrieval As those in the field bear witness, the use of digital information in the battlefield is producing a revolution. DARPA aim to ensure U.S. technological superiority in all areas where information can provide a decisive military advantage. This includes the conventional defense mission areas where information has already driven a revolution in military affairs: intelligence, surveillance, reconnaissance, command, control, communications, computing, networking, decision-making, planning, training, mission rehearsal, and operations support. Advocates of digital technology see its potential to produce gamechanging disruptions of the status quo. In the military sphere in both counter insurgency warfare, civilian and military counter terrorism and the management of unimaginable and rising quantities of many different types of digital data, the race is on to find ways of ever better recording and retrieval of data which add value to understanding of the past and better decision making in the future.

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SPECIAL REPORT: NEXT GENERATION END-TO-END RECORDING SOLUTIONS

References: 1

 January 16, 2011 In New Military, Data Overload Can Be Deadly

By THOM SHANKER and MATT RICHTEL ‘The New York Times’

2

DARPA http://www.darpa.mil/Our_Work/I2O/Programs/Insight.aspx Benjamin Cutler

Intelligence Issues for Congress Richard A. Best Jr. Specialist in National Defense December 28, 2011 http://www.fas.org/sgp/crs/intel/RL33539.pdf

3

4

Intelligence Issues for Congress Richard A. Best Jr. Specialist in National Defense December 28, 2011 http://www.fas.org/sgp/crs/intel/RL33539.pdf

5

Intelligence Issues for Congress Richard A. Best Jr. Specialist in National Defense December 28, 2011 http://www.fas.org/sgp/crs/intel/RL33539.pdf

6

http://www.fas.org/sgp/crs/intel/R41284.pdf Intelligence, Surveillance, and Reconnaissance (ISR) Acquisition: Issues for Congress Richard F. Grimmett, Specialist in International Security Rebecca S. Lange, Air Force Fellow September 10, 2012

7

http://www.rusi.org/downloads/assets/WHR_1-12.pdf Short War, Long Shadow The Political and Military Legacies of the 2011 Libya Campaign Edited by Adrian Johnson and Saqeb Mueen

8

http://smallwarsjournal.com/jrnl/art/pir-development-in-a-coin-environment Putting the PRIORITY Back Into PIR PIR Development in a COIN Environment by Ms. Z. Tenay Guvendiren and Lieutenant Colonel Scott Downey

9

http://smallwarsjournal.com/jrnl/art/pir-development-in-a-coin-environment Putting the PRIORITY Back Into PIR PIR Development in a COIN Environment by Ms. Z. Tenay Guvendiren and Lieutenant Colonel Scott Downey

10

http://www.wpafb.af.mil/library/factsheets/factsheet.asp?id=9204 AFOSR: MATHEMATICS, INFORMATION AND LIFE SCIENCES, BAAAFOSR-2012-0001, Page 42 Contact:
Program Manager
Dr. Tristan Nguyen
AFOSR/RSL
E-mail: ICF@afosr.af.mil

11

AN AUTOMATED DEEP NATURAL-LANGUAGE ANALYSIS UNLOCK THE POWER OF INFERENCE? http://www.darpa.mil/NewsEvents/ Releases/2012/05/03a.aspx May 03, 2012 Deep Exploration and Filtering of Text (DEFT)

12

AN AUTOMATED DEEP NATURAL-LANGUAGE ANALYSIS UNLOCK THE POWER OF INFERENCE? http://www.darpa.mil/NewsEvents/ Releases/2012/05/03a.aspx May 03, 2012 Deep Exploration and Filtering of Text (DEFT)

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