Spies get social network as CIA, FBI promote their version of Facebook

At long last, US intelligence agencies have created a new system of sharing their information with one another to prevent another terrorist attack.

And it’s a lot like Facebook.

Not to be left out of the social networking action, the FBI, CIA and the other 14 U.S. intelligence agencies are getting a new site called A-Space designed specifically for spying, CNN reported.

“It’s every bit Facebook and YouTube for spies, but it’s much, much more,” said Michael Wertheimer, assistant deputy director of national intelligence for analysis. “It’s a place where not only spies can meet but share data they’ve never been able to share before,” Wertheimer said. “This is going to give them for the first time a chance to think out loud, think in public amongst their peers, under the protection of an A-Space umbrella.”

Unlike the games and gossip of YouTube and Myspace, A-Space will be used primarily by intelligence analysts for tracking enemy movements in Iraq and Afghanistan.

The site’s goal is to combine all the intelligence agencies date in a single place so a crucial piece of information isn’t ignored, like the pre-9/11 email from an FBI agent warning of people learning to fly airplanes but not learning to land them.

“There was the question, ‘Was that a dot that failed to connect?’ Well, that person did this via e-mail,” Wertheimer said. “A-Space is the kind of place where you can log that observation and know that your fellow analysts can see that.”

Only those with specific proper security clearance will have access to A-Space, which will allow videos and satellite images of troop movements to be sent quickly from one user to another, DailyTech reported.

Government officials left out the details on how the site would be protected, though they did describe a “mechanism” called MasterCard, which will find suspicious behavior from users and report it to system administrators.

The site has been in testing for several months and will officially launch on September 22.


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