Category Archives: Updates

An Uncertain Future

The impending retirement of Twitter API v1 is going to have a significant impact on Covert Contact. Although alternative methods of compiling and streaming updates are being explored this may in fact be a fatal blow.

Due to the unpredictability of service, and an uncertain future, access is now limited to current subscribers and they will not be billed for access. Covert Contact will be free, while it lasts, or until an alternative route can be identified and implemented.

Thank you for your business, your support, and your feedback.

Monitoring the Black Bloc’s Role in Egypt’s Protests

Covert Contact - Social Media Situational Awareness - Black Bloc Monitor

The increasingly large (and violent) protests in Egypt are being tracked by several Covert Contact monitors – Egypt, Egypt Widescreen, Muslim Brotherhood, Riots, and the Mohammed Morsi monitor are all picking up on the activity. However, there’s a lot of unexpected action in the Black Bloc Monitor thanks to their growing presence in the protests:

An unpredictable new element has entered Egypt’s wave of political unrest: a mysterious group of masked young men called the Black Bloc who present themselves as the defenders of protesters opposed to the Islamist president’s rule.

They boast that they’re willing to use force to fight back against Islamists who have attacked protesters in the past — or against police who crack down on demonstrations. The youths with faces hidden under black masks have appeared among stone-throwing protesters in clashes with police around Egypt the past five days in the wave of political violence that has shaken the country.

During protests in Cairo on Monday, masked youths celebrated around a police armored vehicle in flames in the middle of Tahrir Square, waving their hands in V-for-victory signs.

The Black Bloc Monitor can be found in the “Movements” section of subscriber’s main menu.

Subscriptions to Covert Contact’s array of hundreds of global security live streams are available for only $10 per month.

Algeria Monitor: Tracking the BP Hostage Crisis

Covert Contact - Live Streaming Social Media Intelligence - Algeria

Estimate differ but even at the lower end a number of lives are at risk:

The man behind the group claiming responsibility for the attack and kidnappings is a veteran jihadist known for seizing hostages.

Moktar Belmoktar, an Algerian who lost an eye while fighting in Afghanistan in his teens, has long been a target of French counter-terrorism forces. Libyan sources said he spent several months in Libya in 2011, exploring cooperation with local jihadist groups and securing weapons.

The attackers put the number of hostages at “more than 40,” including seven Americans, two French, two British and other Europeans. Another Islamist group told the Mauritanian News Agency there were 41 “Westerners.”

However, the Algerian Press Service reported that “a little more than 20 foreign nationals are held hostage.”

The Algeria Monitor has been been tracking this story well. It’s tracking any mention of the country, discussions about Islamists in the country, and the US Embassy there.

Subscriptions to Covert Contact’s array of hundreds of global security live streams are available for only $10 per month.

Occupy Movement Monitor Updated

Covert Contact - Live Streaming Social Media Intelligence - Occupy Movement Monitor

Each feed has been optimized and the third column has been updated to focus on the relationship between the Occupy Movement and law enforcement.

Subscriptions to Covert Contact’s array of hundreds of global security live streams are available for only $10 per month.

Sinai Monitor Updated

 
The Sinai Monitor has been completely re-written. It is now streaming discussions about weapons and other smuggling, incidents of violence, and issues related to Egypt and Israel.

Subscriptions to Covert Contact’s array of hundreds of global security live streams are available for only $10 per month.

DIA to Greatly Expand HUMINT Role

Covert Contact - Live Streaming Social Media Intelligence - Defense Intelligence Agency

A significant, but not unexpected, realignment seems to be occurring within the US intelligence community:

The Pentagon will send hundreds of additional spies overseas as part of an ambitious plan to assemble an espionage network that rivals the CIA in size, U.S. officials said.

The project is aimed at transforming the Defense Intelligence Agency, which has been dominated for the past decade by the demands of two wars, into a spy service focused on emerging threats and more closely aligned with the CIA and elite military commando units.

When the expansion is complete, the DIA is expected to have as many as 1,600 “collectors” in positions around the world, an unprecedented total for an agency whose presence abroad numbered in the triple digits in recent years.

The Defense Intelligence Agency Monitor is capturing the reaction to this weekend’s story quite well with live streams for the DIA, the broader intelligence community, and the Defense Clandestine Service.

The US Intelligence Community Monitor is also tracking these developments. It features live streams covering the community, defense intelligence, and intelligence leaks.

Subscriptions to Covert Contact’s array of hundreds of global security live streams are available for only $10 per month.

Israel Widescreen Monitor

Covert Contact - Live Streaming Social Media Intelligence - Israel Widescreen Monitor

The Pillar of Defense Monitor has morphed into a widescreen Israel Monitor now that a ceasefire has taken hold – for now. This monitor tracks discussions about the Israeli government, defense forces, air power (including drones), missile defense systems, intelligence community, Hezbollah, and of course the Palestinians. It is guaranteed to never lack for content.

Subscriptions to Covert Contact’s array of hundreds of global security live streams are available for only $10 per month.

London Monitor Updated

The London Monitor has been overhauled and now focuses on any mentions of the city itself, radical Islamists and clerics, and references to terrorism. Make sure that you refresh your browser to load the updates.

Subscriptions to Covert Contact’s array of over 140 topic monitors and 400 live social media streams are available for only $10 per month.

All Syria Monitors Updated

The Syria, Syria Widescreen, and Syrian Weapons Issues monitors have all received substantial updates today. The updates allow for better tracking of the new National Coalition of Syrian Revolutionary and Opposition Forces, and involvement by regional players ranging from Turkey, to Israel, to Hezbollah. Subscribers should refresh their browsers when loading the new monitors to ensure that they receive the updates.

Subscriptions to Covert Contact’s array of over 140 topic monitors and 400 live social media streams are available for only $10 per month.

Mali Monitors Updated

 
Intervention is almost inevitable and the two Mali-focused monitors have been update to reflect this. The three column Mali Monitor is tracking the Malian government, Islamists, and discussions about foreign intervention.

The seven column widescreen monitor is tracking any mention of Mali, ECOWAS, AFRICOM, Islamists, the involvement of specific European countries, drone activity, and discussions about intervention. Of course, these could change over time but they’re tracking the story well right now.

Subscriptions to Covert Contact’s array of over 140 topic monitors and 400 live social media streams are available for only $10 per month.