Counterinsurgency: Intelligence Services Tackle Informants, Deploy Phone-Interceptors
Determined to curb the persistent leakages of information on the movements of troops to insurgents and other criminal elements, the Nigerian Intelligence services have deployed sophisticated intelligence gathering equipment and phone interceptors to detect the activities of unpatriotic informants.
The leadership of the Security and Intelligence Services had recommended the acquisitions of espionage equipment for decisive actions against informants and spies who leaked discreet information to Boko Haram (BH) members.
A top intelligence officer, who preferred anonymity told PRNigeria that some informants have been tracked and apprehended through some of the acquired gadgets.
The officer pointed out that the acquisitions were necessary when clandestine human intelligence, known as HUMINT is occasionally being threatened and exposed by uncooperative attitudes of members of the local communities who have sympathy and support for the terrorists.
The source said: “There are lots of success recorded in gathering intelligence and information on the activities of enemies of state through interpersonal contacts, but occasionally our assets were exposed and captured by terrorists who execute the agents in most crude manners including death by boiling, beheading, shooting, crucifixion, stoning and by moving truck.
“The service in collaboration with our foreign intelligence partners have deployed the sophisticated devices that cannot be detected by the level of their concealment and mostly not even visible to human eyes. The acquisitions are proving to be valuable in overt and clandestine collection of intelligence across a spectrum of sources and providing actionable intelligence to the military who are working on the front lines with the troops.”
He disclosed that sophisticated mobile phone interceptors have also been deployed to detect the unpatriotic informants, adding: “With the acquisition of sophisticated Stingray devices and IMSI catchers, we currently analyze data gathered by the equipment from mobile phones in the targeted areas. Tougher actions are being taken against enemies of state who leak sensitive information on locations and movement of our troops to terrorists and criminal elements.
“The recent online videos showing Boko Haram fighters purported to be executing some soldiers are deliberately shared to weaken the morale and the fighting spirits of the troops in the North-East as some of the footages were old recordings of different locations and some outside Nigeria.”
The security officer also commended the media for their tremendous contributions to the counter-insurgency war, especially through their diligent censorship and accurate fact-verification of forged images and videos posted on social media platforms by agents of BH terrorists.
He noted that factual reportage by the press has helped to truncate the evil agenda of the insurgents and other criminal elements, who desire to give a false impression that they overwhelmed and defeated the troops fighting in the theatre of war.
Though the officer did not deny some soldiers in captivity, he said the security system is working assiduously to ensure the safety of the troops.