CIA’s research investment focus shifts from missiles to big data


One-third of the companies in In-Q-Tel’s portfolio are in Silicon Valley.

Nearly one-third of the 87 companies listed in the portfolio of CIA’s investment wing In-Q-Tel are based in California’s Silicon Valley, the San Jose Mercury News reports.

The CIA’s focus is shifting from missiles and electronic warfare gadgets to surveillance and big data, the article notes. In-Q-Tel has offices in Menlo Park, Calif., Arlington, Va., and Boston, Mass. Most In-Q-Tel-backed firms typically receive funding of $1 million to $3 million, In-Q-Tel’s chief executive told the newspaper.

Silicon Valley recipients of In-Q-Tel funding include hearing aid maker Sonitus Medical, which is developing a wireless, two-way communications device that fits covertly in a person’s mouth. Holographic computing platform provider Infinite Z manipulates data in 3D for intelligence analysts to spot patterns and trends. Biotech firm Fluidigm, which makes microchips that analyze genetic samples, has also received In-Q-Tel funding.

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