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Investigative Data Mining for Security and Criminal Detection [Paperback]

Jesus Mena

Price: £50.41 & FREE Delivery in the UK. Details
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Book Description

1 Dec 2002 0750676132 978-0750676137
Investigative Data Mining for Security and Criminal Detection is the first book to outline how data mining technologies can be used to combat crime in the 21st century. It introduces security managers, law enforcement investigators, counter-intelligence agents, fraud specialists, and information security analysts to the latest data mining techniques and shows how they can be used as investigative tools. Readers will learn how to search public and private databases and networks to flag potential security threats and root out criminal activities even before they occur. The groundbreaking book reviews the latest data mining technologies including intelligent agents, link analysis, text mining, decision trees, self-organizing maps, machine learning, and neural networks. Using clear, understandable language, it explains the application of these technologies in such areas as computer and network security, fraud prevention, law enforcement, and national defense. International case studies throughout the book further illustrate how these technologies can be used to aid in crime prevention. Investigative Data Mining for Security and Criminal Detection will also serve as an indispensable resource for software developers and vendors as they design new products for the law enforcement and intelligence communities. Key Features: * Covers cutting-edge data mining technologies available to use in evidence gathering and collection * Includes numerous case studies, diagrams, and screen captures to illustrate real-world applications of data mining * Easy-to-read format illustrates current and future data mining uses in preventative law enforcement, criminal profiling, counter-terrorist initiatives, and forensic science

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"It shows how myriad distributed data streams can be harnessed to fight crime. Through easy-to-read prose, the reader learns how to use both public and private databases and networks to find threats and minimize risks. Besides explaining how data mining is done, the book introduces the reader to such techniques as intelligent agents (software that performs user-delegated tasks autonomously), link analysis (a process involving the mapping of the associations between suspects and locations), and text mining (a process used to identify a document's content based on linguistic analysis) and how they can aid law enforcement. For example, law enforcement in the United Kingdom use text mining to "institutionalize the knowledge of criminal perpetrators and organized gangs and groups," author Jes s Mena writes. Case studies buttress these points. This work is one of the first books to show security professionals the power of data mining as an investigative tool. As such, it is itself a powerful tool for the industry. - Security Management "an eye-opening and powerful book on the newest weapons in criminal and terrorist detection and deterrence. Adult readers desiring an overview can scan the introductory sections to the chapters. More detail-minded and technical readers will enjoy the challenging complexity found in follow-up case studies. - The Chicago Sun "The book is cleanly presented and includes screenshots of software used for data mining and analysis. Charts are used to explain how pieces of information link together in a descriptive manner, and are also used as examples of what some data analysis software can produce when used correctly. - Security Forums

About the Author

Jesus Mena is a data mining consultant and a former artificial intelligence specialist for the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) in the U.S. He has over 15 years experience in the field and is author of the best-selling Data Mining Your Website and Web Mining for Profit. His articles have been widely published in key publications in the information technology, Internet, marketing, and artificial intelligence fields. He can be contacted at

Inside This Book (Learn More)
First Sentence
With every call you make on your cell phone and every swipe of your debit and credit cards, a digital signature of when, what, and where you call or buy is incrementally built every second of every day in the servers of your credit card provider and wireless carrier. Read the first page
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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index
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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 4.3 out of 5 stars  10 reviews
14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars When on-message, an excellent intro to data mining 27 Sep 2003
By Richard Bejtlich - Published on
I read "Investigative Data Mining for Security and Criminal Detection" (IDM) after attending the 2003 Recent Advances in Intrusion Detection (RAID) conference. Researchers at RAID mentioned "self-organizing maps," "neural networks," "machine learning," and other unfamiliar topics. Mena's book helped me understand these subjects in the context of performing data mining. If you steer clear of the author's discussion of intrusion detection in chapter 10, you'll find IDM enlightening and a little scary.

Author Jesus Mena defines investigative data mining as "the visualization, organization, sorting, clustering, segmenting, and predicting of criminal behavior" (p.1). His book strays from this definition, as he also covers simply discovering patterns of activity for responding to events. Accomplishing this task requires investigative data warehousing, link analysis, software agents, text mining, neural networks, and machine learning. Mena addresses each technique in its own chapter, offering descriptions, case studies, and tools. Two types of data mining analysis exist: descriptive, such as a chart, graph, or decision tree; and predictive, obtained via neural networks and machine learning (p.261). Mena also describes mining via "top-down" vs "bottom-up" approaches. The first involves an analyst exploring data to support his theories. The second relies on software to find patterns in data not imagined by a human analyst (p.343).

Mena is most effective when he writes about what he knows best. I loved chapter 9, where he explains cell phone, insurance, and financial frauds. Much of what he wrote applied directly to my interest in network security monitoring and intrusion detection. Chapter 10 (Intrusion Detection), however, is best ignored. Mena does not appear to understand computer security, and neither do his editors. He calls Snort a "freeware site-based system IDS," in contrast with "network-based IDSs such as RealSecure" (p.306). He labels tcpdump an "attack" tool and says "this is utility for eavesdropping for passwords" (his typos) (p.307) and describes "rhosts" in a "stealth" attack phase as "this utility will evaluate hosts and lists hosts and users who are trusted by the local host" (p.308). Mena isn't a "security guy," either; he lumps "threats and vulnerabilities" together as "weaknesses or flaws in a system, such as a hole in security or a back door" (p.14). A threat is one or more entities with capabilities and intentions sufficient to exploit vulnerabilities in information resources, while a vulnerability is a weakness in design, configuration, or deployment which allow threats to abuse, subvert, or break information resources.

Overall, I really enjoyed IDM. Mena makes numerous fascinating insights. While his prose is somewhat repetitive, he explains the key points needed to get data mining newbies up to speed. In light of the recent revelations of jetBlue sharing data with the government, the techniques Mena describes are both powerful and disturbing.
12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Somewhat weak on details 5 Dec 2003
By Dr Anton Chuvakin - Published on
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I was very excited when I bought the book, but was somewhat disappointed. The reason for that is the book is very light on details and tends to talk about things rather then on how things are done and how they work. The book does cover some tools but with no connection to concepts and with few details on how the tools do what they do. It does contain a lot of interesting material and s generally well written.
Of the most interest to me was the intrusion detection chapter, but in addition to a well-known facts on IDS technology it provided few details on how exactly data mining helps. MITRE case study seems to mostly hint at things rather then show how they were done in this project. I did pick up some ideas from it.
Anton Chuvakin, Ph.D., GCIA, GCIH is a Senior Security Analyst with a major information security company. His areas of infosec expertise include intrusion detection, UNIX security, forensics, honeypots, etc. In his spare time, he maintains his security portal
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Alternative Methodologies 18 Oct 2003
By Marco De Vivo - Published on
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Are you interested in IDS's?

If yes, perhaps you may already know that there are two main kinds of IDS's: based on "known bad behavior or abuse" or based on "behavior deviation".

The first kind is very well known after several popular implementations like SNORT.On the plus side they are not prone to "false positives" but, however,on the minus side they are almost useless with new forms of attacks.

The second kind, in turn, is very prone to false positives and not yet well implemented, but eventually can handle quite well unexpected or new forms of attacks.

If you are interested in this second type of IDS's then "Investigative Data Mining for Security and Criminal Detection" is a MUST.

From basic definitions to a case study, you are leaded through a wonderful tour that includes among others:

Intelligent Agents
Text Mining
Neural Networks
Machine Learning
Criminal Patterns
Intrusion Detection

So, if you are just casually interested in "behavior deviation" based IDS's or a true researcher in related areas, this book undoubtedly will be useful and of great help.
7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Homeland Security-Public Safety and Criminal Detection 9 May 2003
By B.K. Gogia - Published on
I believe this is the first book that brings together the discipline of Data Mining (AI) and the field of forensic criminal detection. His emphasis of the various AI driven technologies with real life case studies makes this book a must read for every intelligence analyst in the intelligence community, Homeland Security and DoD. He makes the very complex field of DM tied with the fields of public safety and criminal detection easier to understand. His focus on Homeland Security, with many real life examples of DM technologies and their importance, assists in the understanding of new technologies role in information sharing. He briefly touches on two key areas of technology which are destined to be at the forefront of DM i.e., software agents and machine learning combined together to offer a unique opportunity to revolutionize the field of criminal detection where sharing information without moving the data is a critical requirement of protecting privacy and ownership.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Data Mining, plain and easy 8 April 2005
By Susana - Published on
This easy to read book is about the prevention of crime using Advanced Data Mining technologies, tools and techniques. The book explains in plain English the technologies, how they work and how they can be used to prevent crime or terrorism. The audience can be anybody interested in the prevention of crime or terrorism such as security specialist, law enforcement, intelligence agents, fraud investigators and public in general since no intricate math is involved. White House's national strategy for homeland security involves Data Mining.

There is a huge amount of disperse information that needs to be gathered, integrated and analyzed. Data mining can assist analysts in sorting through hundreds of thousands of records and can help investigator to reach conclusions in less time. This amazing book covers the latest data mining technologies including Data Integration, Link Analysis, Software Agents, Text Mining, Neural Networks and Machine Learning. Throughout the book there are many case studies, references and Web links to illustrate real world applications of Data Mining. This is a excellent reference book.
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