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Security Camera Video Surveillance_edite

Since the dawn of history, it was clear to military leaders that good intelligence is needed in order to gain the upper hand and defeat the enemy. Such intelligence  usually refers to the enemy’s capabilities, its intentions and whereabouts. This ancient necessity remains vital, and its significance has become even greater today. Currently there are four main sources of intelligence:

  1. Human Intelligence (Humint): Humint is based on what certain people holding important information tell us willingly or from other reasons.

  2. Visual Intelligence (Visint): Visint is information collected by visual means such as security cameras found in buildings, drones, and satellites. This also includes cameras and devices integrated with radars which can detect movement of people, vehicles, planes, ships or anything that moves.

  3.  Signal intelligence (Sigint) – Sigint is intelligence collected or intercepted from communication signals. It includes the ability to listen to the enemy’s radio transmissions, intercept computer messages, monitor personal cell phone data of enemy or suspects etc.  Sigint capabilities also allows to pinpoint enemy’s locations based on their cell phones or other communication devices. Advanced Sigint even allows to penetrate and manipulate cell phone and computer data in a way that the target isn’t even aware of it.

  4. Open source intelligence (Osint) – Osint is the information that can be collected from open sources, mostly from the Internet and social media platforms. Apparently, everyone has access to such source but in reality it is more complicated due to the existence of dark nets which aren’t accessible to anyone and the fact that sometimes only a clever work of crossing together several “innocent” pieces of information can lead to significant and effective intelligence.

The challenge of having good Intelligence isn’t just a matter of budget striving to purchase the most advanced intelligence technologies from various types. State’s intelligence agencies are also facing four main challenges:

  1. Knowing what to chose according to the needs of the organization. Not a simple task when there are hundreds of companies offering different solutions.

  2. Achieving the most out the means based on proper use and the integration with complementary technologies. For example, a certain organization or public facility (Airport, Secrete security compound, City hole, borders protection force, etc.) may decide on purchasing dozens of video security cameras to cover all relevant spaces 24/7. Now they will need dozens of workers working in three shifts to monitor and track any suspicious activity shown by these cameras. The cost would be high, and the results wouldn’t be effective since the human eye is limited in discovering every suspicious event when scanning many screens for long hours. The system can be tenfold more effective if the cameras would be also equipped with video analytics software that is designed to automatically alert and point to the occurrence of any irregularity as defined by the user and detected by the cameras.    

  3. Connecting the information gathered from the different intelligence sources (as explained above) to generate a cohesive conclusion. For example, many times tracking down a terrorist or a criminal depends on the ability to connect data from numerous sources in real time such as his cell-phone location and his car’s license plate number detected by a street camera as he drove by.  

  4. Initiating intelligence operations. As opposed to the common assumption that intelligence work is passive in nature and requires to patiently wait until the technologies discover something, the enemy weather is a state, or a criminal/terror organization is clever, cautious and makes use of sophisticated technologies too. In order to defeat it, it is essential to initiate operations (sometimes by applying fraudulent methods) which will cause the target to make mistakes and to expose itself. This is a kind of a knowhow that takes years and experience to master.

  5. Dealing with organizational problems. A national state usually owns several intelligence agencies working simultaneously, each one with a separate jurisdiction or set of responsibilities. The real challenge is to allow each organization to focus on its own duties and relative advantages and at the same time enable the organizations to collaborate and share critical knowledge among them.


During his last 10 years of public service (1996-2006), General Eiland has worked closely with Israel’s various intelligence agencies leading national level operations and policy making. In that period, he gained vast experience in dealing with the five challenges described above.

Eiland continued to be involved in Intelligence activity as senior consultant to ELTA – a world leading company in the realm of radars, Sigint and Cyber, as well as an unofficial adviser of Israel’s intelligence community. Currently, he is also an advisory board member of an Israeli leading think tank which specializes in intelligence.

Based on all of the above, Eiland can greatly assist any national intelligence agency (Military, police or other), in establishing or improving its organizational behavior, methodologies, technological aspects and operational methods.

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