|“||the process of taking information from similar or different sources or intelligence disciplines and creating knowledge. Fusion requires a human to conduct analysis and the correlation and collation efforts of automated systems to do fusion quickly and effectively.||”|
Fusion refers to the overarching process of managing the flow of information and intelligence across all levels and sectors of government and private industry. It goes beyond establishing an information/intelligence center or creating a computer network. The fusion process supports the implementation of risk-based, information-driven prevention, response, and consequence management programs. At the same time, it supports efforts to address immediate or emerging threat-related circumstances and events.
Data fusion involves the exchange of information from different sources — including law enforcement, public safety, and the private sector — and, with analysis, can result in meaningful and actionable intelligence and information. The fusion process turns this information and intelligence into actionable knowledge.
The fusion process also allows for continued reevaluation of existing data in context with new data in order to provide constant updates. The public safety and private sector components are integral in the fusion process because they provide fusion centers with crime-related information, including risk and threat assessments, and subject-matter experts who can aid in threat identification.