“Decoding Minds, Foiling Adversaries”

Sharon Berry reports in the October issue of SIGNAL magazine on a new technology which which Dr. John D. Norseen of Lockeed Martin Aeronautics Co. says may be able to determine if a person is lying. Excerpt:

Whether a threat comes from pilot error or enemy aggression, scientists are finding that multisensor mapping and analysis of the brain lead to systems with human-machine interfaces that can correct human error, aid counterintelligence work and guard against attacks.

A technology, known as bio-fusion, combines sensors to examine biological systems to understand how information and neural structures produce thought and to display the thought in mathematical terms. By creating an advanced database containing these terms, researchers now can look at brain activity and determine if a person is lying, receiving instructions incorrectly or concentrating on certain thought types that may indicate aggression.

[Dr. Norseen]…has been asked by military and law enforcement agencies to show how brainprints can be used to determine probable cause, which could be used for an anti-terrorism situation. “If someone is walking through the airport and he goes through the security checkpoint and we get a feeling that this person is preoccupied with certain numbers or certain thought types that may indicate hostility or aggression we could ask him questions and verify the answers. Then it gives you probable cause to say, ‘Sir/Ma’am, may we step aside with you and ask you additional questions?’ It allows you to find a problem set within a large group.” Norseen is confident that if such a system were fully developed it would be accepted if it meant everyone would be safer at the airport gate. The data he collects may not only show probable cause but also truth verification, he adds. The brain, which uses energy, does not want to expend it needlessly, he says. If someone is telling the truth, it is kept on the outside portion of the brain in low-energy domain areas of the brain. “If someone starts to light up in more areas of the brain and at a higher energy level, it means that the person is now starting to confabulate or obfuscate.” Research so far indicates a 90 to 95 percent accuracy rate.

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