How Do We Collect Intelligence?
Intelligence collection refers to the means and processes used to gather and ‘collect’ information of value. Often depending on the information, the goal of intelligence collection is to gain access to restricted or secret information.
The following are ‘methods’ of intelligence collection, provided to give you an understanding of the types of intelligence and how it works.
Human Intelligence (HUMINT) is the collection of information from people.
Signals Intelligence (SIGINT) refers to the collection of electronic communications information such as phone conversations or communications data.
Measurement and Signature Intelligence (MASINT) refers to the information collected by sensors developed to record different characteristics of a target.
Imagery Intelligence (IMINT) refers to the information collected from photographs and imagery.
Open Source Intelligence (OSINT) refers to the information available in the public domain.
Surveillance is the activity of watching and following a target.
Cyber Intelligence refers to the information derived from ‘cyber’ intrusions, (i.e. computer hacking).