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Although private sector intelligence organisations exist in most countries, the sector is by far the biggest in the USA. There are also several large intelligence firms that work internationally.

 

According to a New York Times article, 70% of the USA’s intelligence budget now goes to private sector intelligence companies—making it a $56 billion a year industry. 500,000 private contract workers currently have top-secret security clearance in the U.S. alone. This is a relatively new phenomenon and does not hold true in the UK to that degree. Most people spend many years working in intelligence in the public sector, including typical agencies such as the CIA or MI6 but also military or police operations, before transferring to the private sector. Many private firms were actually established by retirees from the public sector. It’s now common for public sector agencies to contract out of a lot of the work they used to accomplish in-house to private consultants. The private sector can also often offer higher compensation than government jobs on average, a heady temptation to successful public sector employees.

 

The private intelligence sector can be harder to break into than public intelligence. As mentioned above, most people break into the private sector first worked publicly, although there are entry-level jobs as well. Intelligence requires very specific personalities. Much, if not most, of the work is research based. These jobs will often involve some travel and an extensive amount of regional and country knowledge. For students who are interested in politics, current events, and security, private sector intelligence can provide a fascinating career choice.

 

Private agencies make their services available to governments, individual consumers and large corporations with an interest or investment in the category (e.g. crime, disease, corruption, etc.) or the region (e.g. Middle East, Vietnam, Eastern Europe, etc.) or to investigate perceived threats such as environmental groups or human rights groups

Some private intelligence agencies use online perception management, social media influencing/manipulation campaigns, strategic disinformation (such as fake news production/propaganda production), opposition research and political campaigns using social media and artifical intelligence such as Psy-Group, Cambridge Analytica and Black Cube.The Atlantic Council's Digital Forensic Research Lab described the activity of Archimedes Group as practicing "information warfare".

Patrium Intelligence is a UK based Private Intelligence Agency offering the full range of services described above, and has also been a contributor to the new website.  With a presence in Hong Kong, the UK, the US and Middle East, Patrium is a good example of a new breed of PIA which invests a great deal of time and resources into its own research and development.  The organisation has specific expertise within the area of global cultural intelligence and the use of local on-the-ground methods of intelligence gathering.  It is also deeply entwined with Exponential Intelligence (the cross-over between Exponential Technolgical development and Secret Intelligence Services) and Ahead of Time (AoT) innovation and development. They recently launched PROP (Patrium Remote Operations Programme) which is designed to assist experienced Intelligence staff establish remote operations with their backing all the assets at their disposal.  Teamwork is an absolutley critical element and having the right people and allowing them to prosper offers certain individuals an exciting and rewarding way to harness their local, culutral experience.  In turn this allows Patrium to offer a more refined element to its clients overseas in what is in essence a franchise opportunity for Intelligence Professionals.  A relatively new concept, certainly in terms of marketing, which provides professionals overseas with the best of both worlds i.e independence and autonomy but with the financial backing and infrastrucutre of a global intelligence agency.

 

Patrium has attracted some interest due to its open approach to recruitment of diverse groups of people and sources of intelligence across the globe, and breaking boundaries within the intelligence arena.  Founded by two former colleagues, Patrium is a good representation of the current breed of PIA which is closely in tune with a new era of espionage (Espionage 4.0 as Chief Alex Younger calls it).

Other PIA's also offer a number of services in the same arena with some focussing less on a 'one stop shop' approach in favour of sepcific areas of expertise such as perception management, PR, cyber security etc.

Within the private sector, there are several companies specialising in different aspect of intelligence.  Patrium Intelligence is currently recruiting for the following positions:

1. Head of Desk and Departmental Liason - US (NY)

This position would suit someone with 6-8 years experience working as a deputy or head of desk role managing teams and coordinating projects with other domestic agencies. Ideally the candidate would have had experience working in locations throughout Europe assisting senior diplomatic or political personnel including detailed briefings and appraisals.  We would be looking for someone with fluency in two or three languages, preferably including Ukrainian.  All appropriate top security clearances/polygraphs up to date .  Please quote reference: rtei-posptr

Position - Full Time

Salary - $142,500 - $148,500

Location - New York Area

2. OSINT Software Development 

Preferably an individual who is a CISSP and has a strong background across all areas within the research and/or intelligence environment.  A strong post-graduate qualification in a related subject would be an advantage, as would another language. More details are available on request.  Please quote reference: sftdev-posptr

Position - Full Time

Salary - £42,500 - £47,500

Location - London

3. Language Specialist - More details are available on request.  Please quote reference: scanlang-posptr

Språkspecialist - svenska och / eller holländska. Vänligen citera referens: scanlang-posptr

Position - Full Time

Salary - €30,500 - €36,500

Location - Stockholm

4. UK Financial Regulatory Lawyer

We are looking for some one with extensive experience working in the Financial Crime sector, ideally within one of the law enforcement agencies or Financial Conduct Authority.  The position will involve taking a lead role in organising the development of individual projects in a team consisting of approximatley 12 members working within the organisation and teams across various other external locations. 

The position will require extensive travel and time spent in oversees locations.

More details are available on request.  Please quote reference: ukreg-posptr

Position - Full Time

Salary - £112,000 - £122,500 + Benefits (including relocation costs if applicable).

Location - London

The Remora Principle
The CEO at Patrium Intelligence (one of our appointed Private Intelligence Agencies) recently coined the term "The Remora Principle" and how it describes a method of operating within Secret Intelligence globally.  The phrase to 'operate within the shadows' is often used, however the Remora Principle outlines in specific detail how effective intelligence gathering is achieved by not only staying within the shadows of a larger, more distracting element, but to move with it.  It provides key steps Intelligence Agents should take to ensure effective information gathering and reporting to officers, and focuses more on modern technological advancement.  By following the steps outlined within the Remora Principle, one is able to then tailor specific actions that are applicable to individual operations.
Q: Can we induce an event which leads to a material and significant change in a person’s ability or behaviour which would be useful to an organisation such as MI6?

Straps yourselves in for a little bit of a wild ride, so if extreme sports of the academic or indeed philosophical kind are not your thing, then please unbuckle now and leave the park. The four terms used in the title would appear at first glance to be connected, but for the purposes of this article, are not.  There is a distinct, and key difference in that they refer to a journey of sorts.  The journey of the mind and neural functionality that eventually leads to a change which has been caused by an ‘event’. Each term describes a condition.  A condition of the brain at a point in the journey. 

Where did my Taxi Driver and my money go?”

 

Whenever there is a radical and rapid development in Technology, the voices of those who fear the human effects of such developments sing loud.  Of course, debate is ultimately a healthy proposition when conducted in the correct manner i.e a respectful exchange of ideas, evidence and facts to determine the truth or at least the likelihood of why ‘something’ happens.  The problem is that as we venture further up the emotional curve and hit the raw nerve of public consciousness, a healthy debate, absent of extreme views, is less and less likely.   This is quite possibly the stage we are at now when it comes to the vast changes of technological development at exponential rates of growth.  If one then throws into the mix a subject such as Artificial Intelligence, which has been the subject of many a doomsday prophecy, especially in the fictional world, then the prediction of likely effects  becomes distorted.  There are a vast number of capillaceous issues branching out from each topic within AI and on a scale which precludes us from analysis in this article due to time.  However, there are rarely more topics as emotive as a person's job and their ability to generate income in order to survive...so will driverless cars render the taxi driver extinct and will money even be necessary in any form? Read More. 13.08.19

Dark Web

An Opportunity or Threat?

Perceived wisdom suggests the Dark Web is synonymous with illegal activities involving weapons, drugs and paedophiia.  The assumption has been that if you use it, then you have something sinister to hide.  To be fair, closure of drug giants like "Silk Road" did nothing to change those perceptions.  However, in the big brother world of surveillance, the search for privacy is demanded by the majority and will be found in some way or another.  Furthermore, in a society where people are being increasingly attracted to the fringes of life,  the shift to increasing usage of the Dark Web is a given.  That does not mean it is wrong however, and as we often witness, it is people from the 'fringes' who sometimes operate outside of social norms, who provide the greatest sources of innovation.  We firmly believe the dark web will undergo an upgrade of sorts and although usual, non-secured browser based sites will attract some attention, their days are numbered.  The really exciting proposition is to predict Dark Web 2.0, 3.0 and so on. Rather ironically, but understandably, it is the law enforcement and intelligence agencies who are spending more and more resources on hiding within the shadows of the Dark Web.  It has been the most effective way so far.  However, as it grows, it will it continue to be the safe haven of the criminal or will some form of regulation (such as was with the legalisation of drugs etc), prevent the extreme offenders?  Take the example of Silk Road. It is not only possible, it is probable.  Whether you are in favour of legalisation generally or not,  in many cases it is a safer option.  Many of the sites that offered Marijuana were ran as slick commercial organisations where consumer satisfaction was paramount.  The product was therefore of superior quality (apparently) and it was offered within the relative safety of the internet and not some dark street corner.  Maybe that one is for the liberals out there.  For our purposes however, it shows that the deep dark web does actually have a USP which can be monetized, namely privacy.  Looking further head therefore, the real drug that will sell well in our 'Orwellian' future, is anonymity.  That will undoubtedly be the most precious of commodities.

 

As it stands now however, people and the societies they live in tend to display tendencies to self-regulate and yes, whilst there is always potential for abuse, the masses will (or should) drive the market to some degree of parity.  There are certainly huge opportunities around the corner.  A secured 'blockchain'esque' physical depository for parcel delivery is bound to happen on a large scale and accompany the growth of the Dark Web.  That is because the only chink in its armour at the moment is complete anonymity with delivery of items. Imagine a secure facility where parcels (aka Data) entering from one side, is subjected to 'scrambling' (aka 'Encryption') and leave the other side to be collected by a seemingly unconnected party (aka 'You').  Now multiply that across every City in the UK.  You then have what one can REALLY call an encrypted, secure, supply chain that would be undetectable to all agencies and, most importantly, legal  Read More.

Innovation, technology and the military are inextricably linked, and throughout history whenever there is a technological breakthrough, one of the first beneficiaries is invariably the military.  Whether it is recent developments such as GPS, or much later, Galileo selling telescopes to Italian monasteries to see enemy ships approaching, the human desire to conquer or defend is paramount. With the 'genie' firmly out of the bottle, Artifical Intelligence will become a 'game changer' in the Military world as for many, the upsides are simply too strong to worry about potentially disastrous consequences.  Here we take a look at the detail and the precise areas of growth just around the corner.Read More

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