Robert D. Steele is the founder and CEO of OSS.NET. A 25-year veteran of the U.S. national security community, and one of the first clandestine case officers to be assigned terrorism as a full-time target, Mr. Steele has served on the national-level information handling and advanced information processing and analysis steering committees and was the senior civilian responsible for creating our nation's newest all-source intelligence analysis center, the Marine Corps Intelligence Command. Mr. Steele's recently publications include On Intelligence: Spies and Secrecy in an Open World (2000 and 2001) and The New Craft of Intelligence: Personal, Public, and Political (2002). [ Panel: Ground Zero ]
He spent his early years, two decades, in Latin America and Asia as the son of an oil company executive. Steele has an BA in Political Science; an MA in International Relations; and an MPA in Public Administration. He resigned from the military in 1993.
He is commonly associated with the open source intelligence movement and coined the terms "virtual intelligence" and "information peacekeeping". He argues that U.S. intelligence reform is needed, and that the private sector can perform a high percentage of U.S. open source intelligence needs and reduce cost to the U.S. government. He advocates "collective intelligence" or "the wisdom of the crowd" (what Howard Rheingold calls "smart mobs") and for hackers as a national resource.