Want To Track Terrorists? Modus Operandi Has an App for That…

They do, but unless you are in the military or Department of Defense, you can’t use it. Modus Operandi is a company based in Melbourne, Fla and they have been creating a Facebook-style interface to track and profile terrorists. The program is designed to be comfortable and easy-to-use for new intelligence analysts who were raised with social media.

“An intelligence analyst in the world of military services is normally a very young person with little life experiences, limited technology skills,” explained Eric Little, Modus Operandi’s chief scientist to The Daily Dot. With its simple interface, the program can be updated quickly and easily in even harsh conditions in the field. The program is a follow up to their successful database of terrorists that mimicked the Wikipedia interface. Keeping the program familiar allows for its use with little technical knowledge.

“It’s for tracking bad guys. If you’re in Kabul, and I’m in Lahore, and you get information about this guy who was in this town at this cafe last week, the information automatically goes into a data graph,” said Little in an interview with Venture Beat. Little continued, “The power of this is that I’m using a simple user front-end to exchange data in real time. This is powerful if you think about how intelligence actually works. What were really doing is allowing people to find patterns in their data.”

A sample of Modus Operandi's prior Wikipedia-style application, which the new interface expands upon.
A sample of Modus Operandi’s prior Wikipedia-style application, which the new interface expands upon.

The potential for this program was summed up by a DefenseSystems.com article which said, “the company’s Wave engine is middleware that operates in the background and can be tailored with subject matter expertise. It can use that expertise to make advanced queries, perform analysis, make connections and push that information to analysts, rather than having analysts go in and dig it out.”

“For example, if subjects X, Y and Z have a certain type of relationship and are linked to a certain organization or and arms dealer, they could be classified as a high-value target. Members of an organization can be tracked via a data graph that is updated automatically when new information is entered. The system also could link two analysts who might be looking for the same thing,” the article continued.

As the struggle against terrorism expands, the program can keep up with changes in people, locations and activities. By creating a simple interface, Modus Operandi is making it easier for our forces to keep track of the terrorists. Tracking terrorists is just one use of the Wave engine. It has also been used to track the spread of Ebola in Africa and the last major outbreak was predicted by Modus Operandi. Other uses for the data analytics program are in the works.

Currently, the Navy, Marine Corps and Army are testing the interface.

Disclaimer: The content in this article is the opinion of the writer and does not necessarily reflect the policies or opinions of US Patriot Tactical.

Matt Towns
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Matt Towns

Matt is a former military journalist who spent 10 years in the US Navy. He served in various posts during his career, including a couple of deployments on the USS Valley Forge (CG-50). After leaving the Navy, he worked in management for a number of years before opening his own businesses. He ran those businesses until 2012 when he chose to leave the retail industry and return to writing. Matt currently works as a freelance writer, contributing to the US Patriot blog and other websites about political affairs, military activities and sailing.
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