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Introducing the OSINT Foundation

Former intelligence leaders are trying to boost the role of open source intelligence at U.S. spy agencies through a new foundation that plans to develop community-wide standards and help professionalize the OSINT workforce.

The unveiling of the OSINT Foundation comes at a time when social media feeds and other public analysis are providing unprecedented public insights into world events like Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. Meanwhile, Congress and other advocates are calling on intelligence leaders to develop new open source strategies to better take advantage of publicly available information.

The foundation’s board includes several former high ranking officials, including Ron Burgess, a retired Army lieutenant general who served as director of the Defense Intelligence Agency; Barbara Fast, a retired Army major general who commanded the Army Intelligence Center; and Tom Fingar, the former deputy director of national intelligence for analysis.

Barbara Alexander, the president of the foundation, said the organization will be focused on developing OSINT professionals within the U.S. intelligence community. The foundation’s official launch was Aug. 1.

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