What do intelligence analysts need to be aware of when writing an intelligence report?

After collecting, processing, and analyzing data, intelligence analysts are often required to write an intelligence report.

What does an intelligence report need to contain?


A report should begin with an introduction and should contain a small introduction. The incident itself needs to be mentioned, which may have something to share, but make sure not to include any kind of speculation in order to keep things factual.


This section will describe the objectives of the survey and the research questions. When there are objectives, the investigation itself has a clear purpose. This will also help to focus the readers of the report, as the objectives will establish a direction or purpose for some of the findings.


Any research methodology that requires interpretation, is documented in this section, or requires outside expertise. When a small portion of the investigation process uses a particular technique, it may be sufficient to give additional explanation before presenting the findings.


Explain all steps performed in the investigation to aid in verification. The steps taken are recorded, along with the date and time, which enables the researcher to verify any findings.

5.Data source

This section will mention the sources of data used during the survey and their quality. Information or intelligence gathered from any source is only good if it has a high degree of credibility.

6.Uncertain factors

When the findings are not conclusive, or where there are gaps in the survey, these gaps need to be mentioned. This will also ensure that the investigation remains unbiased. Stick to the facts, but when there is a clear need to write down a possible situation, or when something is unclear, don't be afraid to mention it.


What is described here are findings and are based on facts. It may also include newly discovered problems, new avenues of exploration, but most importantly, a summary of the problems discovered.

It's important to emphasize that when writing your report, make sure you stick to the facts and don't lean toward any particular theory, which can lead to confirmation bias. If you do use a guesswork to find some answers, or start a new investigation, make sure that those investigative methods don't turn into a working theory to lead the rest of the investigation, because each investigation doesn't have a uniform approach . As a researcher, you should be completely unbiased throughout the process.

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