Geospatial intelligence being used in the field
The American Geographical Society (AGS) announced its endorsement of tenBoma, a counter-poaching initiative, developed by the International Fund for Animal Welfare (IFAW) in partnership with the Kenya Wildlife Service (KWS) in December of 2015. In March 2016, AGS and The United States Geospatial Intelligence Foundation (USGIF), with sponsorship from IFAW, hosted the Congressional Forum “Criminal Nature: The Global Security Implications of Illegal Wildlife Trade” in Washington D.C. This forum brought together groups from the public, private and NGO sectors to meet and share methods on how to use geographic thinking, geo-spatial technologies and data to combat and dismantle wildlife trafficking organizations that help finance terrorism. Now, thanks to the first in a series of reports from IFAW’s tenBoma team in Kenya, we get a glimpse into the hard work the men and women in the field are doing to fight and defend wildlife.
The premise of tenBoma is to develop a counter-wildlife crime intelligence fusion center that can join community anti-poaching tips and efforts with high-tech data analysis and enhanced national security operations to stop poachers before they strike. In Kenya, IFAW, KWS, Fulcrum which uses geospatial technology to collect forms and field data using custom smartphone apps, along with Agile Analytics Group, who provides geospatial support and training, the tenBoma initiative has taken the best practices and processes to develop an effective counterinsurgency operation to fight against these criminal poaching networks. The team using geospatial intelligence, simple maps with activity and data overlays allows information to be readily available at a glance. These reports are starting to link the ‘who, what, when, where’ of poaching related activities on a map instead of just listing items on a non-correlated spreadsheet, allowing information to be processed much more rapidly in order to drive a more predictive response to wildlife crime.
To read more on how geospatial intelligence is helping tenBoma to combat poaching click here.