Director of Central Intelligence Directive 2/12


(Effective 1 March 1994)

Pursuant to the National Security Act of 1947, as amended, and Executive Order 12333, policies and procedures are hereby established for the management of the Intelligence Community Open Source Program. [Footnote]

1. Purpose

The Intelligence Community recognizes that more effective use of open sources in a variety of intelligence applications will lead to improved products and services for Intelligence Community consumers. To manage the use of open source information by the Intelligence Community, this directive establishes the Community Open Source Program and a Community Open Source Program Office (COSPO) within the Central Intelligence Agency to develop, coordinate, and oversee implementation of the Community Open Source Program. The Director of COSPO will be appointed by the Director of Central Intelligence, will be his Principal for all open source matters, and will serve as the Open Source Program Manager. This directive also establishes a Community Open Source Steering Committee comprised of senior managers appointed by the Director of Central Intelligence.

2. Definition

Open source information for purposes of this directive is publicly available information (i.e., any member of the public could lawfully obtain the information by request or observation), as well as other unclassified information that has limited public distribution or access. Open source information also includes any information that may be used in an unclassified context without compromising national security or intelligence sources and methods. If the information is not publicly available, certain legal requirements relating to collection, retention, and dissemination may apply.

3. Objectives

The COSPO is responsible for the definition and defense of the Open Source Program in the planning cycle, and for providing guidance and oversight to the program in the execution cycle. The Office, with Community departmental open source program managers, develops an optimum allocation of resources across the Community in the execution year, subject to ratification by the Open Source Steering Committee. Changes in the scope and resources of the Open Source Program must be agreed to by the Steering Committee. Through this collaborative process, the objectives of the COSPO are to:

a. Oversee a process for coordinating responsive actions to satisfy user needs.

b. Provide advocacy and defense of departmental development and operational efforts.

c. Ensure funds for critical open source activities.

d. Oversee a process for identifying and prioritizing open source substantive requirements.

4. Open Source Management

The Open Source Steering Committee provides top-level program and policy guidance to the Open Source Program. The Steering Committee is chaired by the Executive Director for Intelligence Community Affairs and includes the Executive Director of the Central Intelligence Agency and the Directors of the Defense Intelligence Agency and the National Security Agency, as well as the Deputy Director for Science and Technology of the Central Intelligence Agency, the Deputy Director for Support Services of the National Security Agency, and the Deputy Director for Production of the Defense Intelligence Agency. The Director of COSPO serves as Executive Secretary to the Steering Committee.

The Departmental Program Council, comprised of customer and provider representatives from all interested Intelligence Community organizations, will be chaired by the Director of COSPO and will provide advice and counsel to the Community Open Source Program Office. It will serve the Director of COSPO as a vehicle for discussing proposed Community program initiatives, communicating customer and provider feedback, and ensuring implementation of the Open Source Program.

The COSPO will establish other standing or ad hoc advisory and coordinating boards, panels, and committees as necessary to carry out its program management responsibilities.

5. COSPO Functions

Functions of the COSPO shall include:

a. Strategic Planning - The COSPO will oversee implementation of the Community Open Source Strategic Plan. As necessary, the COSPO will review and update the plan.

b. Program Formulation and Representation - The COSPO will issue planning guidance and will coordinate preparation and execution of the Open Source Program. With departmental open source managers, the COSPO will review execution-year programs prior to the execution year in order to optimize the flexibility and responsiveness of the Open Source Program. The COSPO also will conduct ad hoc program analysis and evaluations as necessary.

c. Initiative and Innovation Sponsorship - Using funds appropriated for the purpose, the COSPO will begin Community initiatives and innovations, which subsequently will be funded in departmental programs.

d. Operational Services of Common Concern - The COSPO will ensure Community coordination of the collection and acquisition of open source information and will represent open source capabilities and interests in national processes designed to manage user information needs.

e. Systems Architecture - The COSPO will coordinate the design and implementation of the Community open source architecture and associated standards. The COSPO will independently assess currently employed technologies and procedures and evaluate promising alternatives.

f. Development of Services of Common Concern - The COSPO will coordinate the development of new processing and exploitation tools and promote the integration of automated data processing tools developed elsewhere.

g. Open Source Advocacy and Representation - The COSPO will defend Open Source Program submissions before Community executive review bodies, the Office of Management and Budget, and the Congress, and will represent the Open Source Program in appropriate Government and public forums.

6. Structure and Administration

As an Intelligence Community entity, the COSPO, located in the Central Intelligence Agency and reporting to the Deputy Director for Science and Technology, is jointly staffed in roughly equal proportion by the Central Intelligence Agency and other Intelligence Community officers who are detailed to the COSPO. The Director of COSPO will normally, but not necessarily, be an officer of the Central Intelligence Agency. The serving Director and Principal Deputy will not be from the same department or agency. Managers of the General Defense Intelligence Program, the Consolidated Cryptologic Program, the Central Intelligence Agency Program, and other intelligence programs will provide appropriate personnel to staff the COSPO with required skills; officers normally will serve rotational assignments of at least two years' duration.


This directive supersedes DCID 2/12, effective 1 June 1992.