IvySys Technologies wins $4.6M DARPA contract to combat weapons of mass terror
IvySys Technologies, based in Arlington, VA, announced on January 30 that it has been awarded a contract for up to $4.6 million, dependent upon successful completion of milestones, by the U.S. Air Force Research Laboratory (AFRL) to support the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) Information Innovation Office (I2O) program, Modeling Adversarial Activity (MAA).
The four-year DARPA MAA program aims to develop mathematical and computational techniques for modeling adversarial activity for the purpose of producing high-confidence indications and warnings of efforts to acquire, fabricate, proliferate, and/or deploy weapons of mass terror (WMTs). IvySys plans to deliver an automated synthetic data generation capability that seamlessly embeds observation data associated with terrorist threat activities of interest within a data-dense and realistic background environment.
Reports of chemical weapons use around the world raises serious concerns about non-state actors’ access to weapons of mass terror (WMT) and reinforces fears of a possible terrorist attack with chemical, biological, radiological, or nuclear (CBRN) weapons in the West. Today’s terrorist networks move operatives, money and material across borders and through the crevices of the global economy, making tracking such adversaries a daunting challenge. In this new norm, the security of the United States will rely on novel, game-changing modeling techniques and solutions to curtail mass terror events.
“It would be difficult to overstate the lack of meaningful test data for evaluating tools that produce indications and warnings of adversarial efforts,” said Dr. James DeBardelaben, president and CEO of IvySys Technologies. “As a leader in advanced analytics, modeling and simulation, information sharing, and interoperability, IvySys looks forward to building on our partnership with DARPA to confront this intelligence analysis challenge and support the government’s mission to protect our country and save lives.”
IvySys’ approach will model the activities required for a non-state actor to acquire and deploy WMT in different scenarios. It will embed real threat indicators with everyday synthetic background data, such as normal banking transactions, emails, and inventory transfers, to capture an adversary’s plans and methods. By the end of the program, IvySys plans to deliver synthetic transaction data generation software for WMT activity detection applications and realistic data sets composed of 10 billion entities and 1 trillion transactions, an unprecedented scale. The generation of large-scale synthetic data sets would protect privacy and classified information.
This DARPA contract builds on IvySys Technologies’ experience supporting the Department of Defense and Intelligence Community. As part of a recent DoD innovation program, IvySys developed a simulation environment for generating synthetic transaction graphs to test and validate models for information diffusion over social networks before applying them to real world data.