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12 19 2014

Agency displays support to Counter Terrorism

Three back-to-back high profile Counter Terrorism Events have recently taken place at NATO HQ, with the participation and support of the NCI Agency. The well attended events allowed senior leaders, operators and Subject Matter Experts to discuss a broad range of topics across the Counter Terrorism domain. The Joint Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance (JISR) Service Line provided support to the sessions through presentations on related Agency work, and coordinated a very well received exhibition showcasing the capabilities tested in Unified Vision 14.

The three events took place on 8, 9 and 10 December, starting with the Biometrics Programme Coordination Group (NBPCG), which included a senior level working session and review of the year's output from the group, chaired by the International Military Staff Intelligence Chief, Rear Admiral Brett Heimbigner. The NCI Agency had the opportunity to present its work on the NATO Automated Biometric Identification System (NABIS), and was represented by Mr Guy Feat for the Directorate of Application Services (DAS), leading the Agency team of subject matter experts.

The second event was the ISAF C-IED Briefing Day hosted by the NATO Emerging Security Challenges Division (ESCD), in coordination with the Strategic Commands and other NATO bodies. The briefing day was co-chaired by Dr Jamie Shea (Deputy Assistant Secretary General, ESCD) and Rear Admiral Brett Heimbigner, and provided the opportunity to bring together the interested communities from NATO, ISAF and KFOR Contributing Nations, and national governmental organizations. The sessions focused on a broad range of topics across the following threads; Lessons learned from operations on Attacking the Network (AtN), Human Network Analysis in support of Targeting (HNAT), NATO Biometrics Programme of Work and Action plan, Technical Exploitation in support of AtN. The Agency was represented by Mr. Matt Roper, Chief JISR Service Line.

Agency displays support to Counter Terrorism

In the words of Dr Shea "This event will provide an opportunity for Subject Matter Experts and operators from the field to discuss and exchange views on the latest trends, projects and initiatives to counter IEDs in the broader perspective of AtN. This will enable the Alliance to develop new capabilities to face global threats and to improve its readiness and interoperability for future theatres of operations."

The final event was the Defence against Terrorism Programme of Work (DAT POW) Decennial celebratory meeting hosted by the ESCD, with introductory statements by the Assistant Secretary General for Security, Ambassador Sorin Ducar and Peter Florin. Again, in the words of Dr Shea, "The DAT POW is a unique programme built on the principle of common funding – it is a fast route to capability development. Under the DAT POW, individual NATO Nations, with support and contributions from other member countries and NATO bodies, lead projects to develop advanced technologies or counter measures which meet the most urgent security needs in the face of terrorism. This accelerates the development of counter measures and their subsequent fielding. The 1.8 MEUR annual budget provides seed money for projects, with the majority of the expenses being covered by the lead nation."

The exhibition provided in parallel with these events built on the success of the DV day at UV14, providing a comprehensive demonstration of the working setup used in Norway this summer. The exhibition included a remarkable and well received walk-through manned by international subject matter experts from NGIC (US), EUCOM, NL C-IED/Biometrics, FFI (NO), NATO SOF, ACT, and the NCI Agency.

NCI Agency support and coordination for this complex event was provided by Mr Nigel Baker, Dr Cristian Coman, and Diederik Zaaijer. The support provided highlights the Agency's continued focus on this domain and demonstrated once again the value that we have to offer in this critical area.

The NCI Agency event team would like to extend thanks to the NATO Office of Security (NOS) for facilitating the demonstration of such sensitive exhibits during these events, and also to the NCI Agency Creative Media Centre for the excellent display materials.