Information Warfare: January 11, 2004

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This month, the U.S. Army is installing new software in Iraq that allows troops to search over two dozen databases containing information on hostile Iraqis. Many units have developed databases to assist in finding Iraqis who are attacking, or planning to attack, coalition forces. The new "Horizontal Fusion" software can search through all the databases for relevant information, and show duplicate and conflicting information as well. The Internet based software will work with existing secure (cut off from the public Internet) networks used in Iraq. The individual databases have been a big help in figuring out who the enemy is, where he is and what he's likely to do next. Many of the databases were built using software designed for American police departments. Each army division, and many brigades and other large units, went off and created their own databases, using over a dozen different software products. The Horizontal Fusion software will make all the databases more useful, without requiring everyone to rebuild their systems using common software (which is considered a messier 20th century approach.) The Horizontal Fusion system is expected to produce a lot more information on who the bad guys are and where they can be found. There should also be fewer arrests of Iraqis who are not involved in the attacks. 

 


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