A Study on Search Engine Use by Intelligence Analysts

D. Libes, E. Morse, and J. Scholtz (USA)


Data mining; Intelligence analysts; Search engines


This work reports on search engine use by intelligence analysts. Intelligence analysts share a degree of common training and understanding while having widely differing backgrounds. This includes their approach to software tool use – analysts show signs of a common understanding while also displaying uniquely personal differences in their investigative approaches. We present some of these observations from studying their use of an open-source search engine. We also report on our experiences with experimental software which analyzes interaction logs to track paths of analyst investigation. Such path tracking was previously done manually by the analysts themselves.

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