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The IDF has been dealing daily with missions involving the extraction of information and insights from large masses of data collected by its vast array of sources, using advanced technologies it developed in the Big Data field.
Recently, the IDF exposed its Intelligence Corps’ development unit, “the Purple Unit”’, which develops applications and information systems that support battle planning, field analysis, locating hiding places, recommendations on operation options and alerts regarding the enemy. The development unit was established in order to extract the information collected by the Intelligence and supply it to the General Staff, the commanders and soldiers in the field, the General Security Service and the Mossad, according to walla.co.il.
As an officer from the Intelligence Corps said, “the Intelligence officers see the information systems as our weapon. We must have an environment that enables to the fusion of all the information on a sole map – SIGINT, HUMINT, ground analysis – in order to achieve insights”.
To the forthcoming Big Data for HLS Conference and Exhibition
The technological systems developed by the unit are based on big data pools and their classification is stricter than “top secret”. They are considered globally as groundbreaking technologies.
One system, named “Investigative Broadcast”, helps “extract the video world in the intelligence realm.” It supplies intelligence officers with an access to IDF’s video streaming, and resources from satellites and other sources – by visualizing them on a map. The information can be observed on the map and on video simultaneously.
Another system, dubbed “Main Road”, focuses on field analysis. It supplies a 3D visualization of a certain area with all the relevant intelligence information, layered. The map is updated in real time. According to the IDF, the system enables the investigation and planning of military forces’ routes basing on the analysis of heights, distances, weather information etc. In addition, the map includes “sensitive locations” such as kindergartens, schools, civilian population concentrations and more, according to kan.org.il.
The Albert System, called after Albert Einstein, focuses on video and images from various sources and their exact location on the map. The system will track enemy behavior patterns via different intelligence sources, and in the future – is expected to incorporate the prediction of activities before they occur and recommend on some operational measures to the commanders already at the maneuver’s planning stage, e.g. regarding routes that are less rapid and less dangerous.
The unit, subordinated to the Chief Intelligence Officer, was established in 2014, following the Protecting Edge Operation, combining two other units – the technological field unit and the unit responsible for information systems.
The unit has been working according to startup working procedures, and numbers 400 soldiers – 50% of which are on compulsory service and the others on reserves.
Various solutions for big data challenges in the security sphere and commercial applications will be discussed and presented at the coming Big Data for HLS Conference and Exhibition.
The event will be held on February 21st at the Lago Conference Center in Rishon LeZion, with the participation of the leading experts and industries of the big data ecosystem in Israel and abroad.