HLTCon: Open Source Intelligence to Forecast the Future, Monitor Events, Unlock the Dark Web

Government forum HLTCon showcases new possibilities through text analytics

From making sense of a recent tragic event, to monitoring major world events as they are occurring–and even predicting social unrest in the future–technologies today can derive startling insights from open data sources. A number of speakers will discuss how text analytics can be combined with open source intelligence for government applications at the Human Language Technology Conference (HLTCon) on March 31st at Tysons Corner, VA.

After the recent terror attack in Paris, Recorded Future analysts were tasked with identifying unique data related to support networks for guns, passports, and potential European buyers.

This analysis uses NLP, machine learning, and entity extraction built into Recorded Future’s OSINT platform to identify a range of threat actors and what they could be engaged in across the open, deep, and dark web. Nicholas Espinoza elaborates in his talk, “Monitoring the Darkweb: Making Sense of Terror Support Networks.”

What can machine learning looking at streaming data tell us about unfolding events? Word embedding technology promises to change real-time analytics as much as it has effected static data analytics by making it possible to follow events as they change in real time. Dr. Catherine Havasi, co-founder and CEO of artificial intelligence (AI) text analytics company Luminoso, will explore how using this new type of machine learning on streaming data allows for an evolving look at unfolding events with case studies of the ISIS “topic of the moment” and fear around the Zika virus outbreak, in her presentation, “Text Analytics for a Fast Moving World.”

The EMBERS predictive analytics system, an automated 24×7 system, was created by Virginia Tech University to continually forecast significant societal events – such as protests, disease outbreaks, elections, domestic political crises – using a multitude of open source data feeds. Over the past three years, EMBERS has successfully predicted the Hantavirus outbreaks in Argentina and Chile (2013), student-led protests in Venezuela (Feb 2014), protests in Paraguay (Feb 2015) against a new public-private partnership law, and more. In his talk, “Forecasting Significant Societal Events Using Open Source Indicators,” Virginia Tech Senior Research Associate, Patrick Butler will outline some of the lessons learned in operating a large-scale forecasting system, especially as pertaining to system architecture, model evaluation, and continual improvement to changing societal dynamics.

Join us at HLTCon this week to hear a full day of talks about the real-world applications of human language technology from Nicholas, Catherine, Patrick, and speakers from the CIA, Prattle, Diffeo, MIT, SDL Government, Elastic, Booz Allen Hamilton, and Basis Technology.

This annual conference is sponsored by Basis Technology. It will be held at the Ritz-Carlton, Tysons Corner, Virginia on March 31, 2016. Registration is free to U.S. government employees with an active government ID. Register today to join us for this unique look into the HLT arena, and networking opportunities with its key leaders.

For more information, please visit www.hltcon.org, email conference@basistech.com, or call +1-617-386-2090.