Striker Pierce CEO & Rift Recon Intelligence Instructor Brian O’Shea Presents At ICCE 2014

Posted on December 01, 2014 by Rift Recon

SAN FRANCISCO, CA, USA Monday December 1st, 2014 Striker Pierce CEO and Rift Recon Intelligence Instructor Brian O’ Shea will be presenting at the International Conference on Corporate Espionage and Industrial Security (ICCE) in Ottawa today. Rift Recon staffer Arianna Travaglini hopped on the phone with O’Shea recently to discuss the impending presentation.

How did you get involved with ICCE this year?

This is my inaugural year attending ICCE. I was contacted by [Northgate CEO] Michel Juneau Katsuya a few months back; he’d heard about my reputation for collecting intelligence and wanted me to submit a proposal to present on a topic akin to catching spies using advice from other spies. It sounded right up my alley, so I did.

Wonderful! Tell me more about your presentation.

My talk is called Inside the Mind of a Spy: Understanding the Threat by Understanding the Corporate Spy Methodology. It’s going to address the lopsided focus that a lot of security professionals have put on the cyber threat while underestimating the social threat. I’ll define the term “competitive intelligence” and explain how Striker Pierce uses social hacking and engineering to accomplish a greater goal. In doing so, we’re not simply trying to penetrate the target company - rather, we’ve perfected that art to create ongoing intelligence networks from the target’s own internal employees while the employees remain largely unwitting to the fact that they’re supplying crucial information. The vast majority of the time we get the best intelligence from current and former employees who don’t even know they’re part of the collection effort.

Can you expand upon this? How can these target company employees be unwitting to your process?

We’ve been doing this kind of human intelligence collection for years. I treat the process as a seduction; you’re delicately drawing people in. You first do your research on the target company so that when you ask the target employees questions, they’re always in the context of the industry, thereby adding to your credibility. You intentionally insert yourself in their lives and spend time forging a tenable bond with them.

Unbeknownst to them, you’re training them to feed you information, creating a conduit. You let trust build both organically and via strategic moves. For example, after I’ve spent a significant period of time with a target individual, I’ll often test their trustworthiness by doing something like dropping a folder containing clearly-marked “Confidential” files. Nine times out of ten they hand the folder back to you without so much as a glance.  The stronger the relationship, the more questions you ask. The more questions you ask, the farther you inch your way in. And the farther in you are, the more company information that employee unconsciously gives you.

Once we’ve collected information from multiple sources, we practice a triangulatory technique, combining and overlapping the data we’ve uncovered from employees and applying in-depth secondary research. At that point it’s easy to fill in the blanks.

That sounds fascinating. I’m sure the talk will be very well-received! Are there any other presentations or events at ICCE that you’re looking forward to?

Absolutely. There are two challenges that I’m looking forward to participating in: the Casino Security Centre challenge, where you get to survey and attempt to breach the highly sophisticated security and surveillance systems at the Lac-Leamy Casino, and the Bugged Room challenge, where you get the opportunity to see how a room can be bugged and how easy it is to be unwittingly spied via hidden microphones and cameras.

Brian O’Shea is the CEO and Senior Investigator at Striker Pierce.  Brian has spent over 20 years in the field of investigations and intelligence working first in military intelligence for two Special Forces groups and then for two different government agencies.  Brian left government service to enter the world of boutique intelligence, focusing on corporate and executive clients, and finally founded Striker-Pierce.  Brian is featured in several publications on body language and human lie detection, has worked intelligence and investigations in over 27 different countries, and has solved over 500 domestic and international cases involving fraud, theft, corporate espionage, patent infringement.  Mr. O’Shea has also been a featured speaker at Reed Smith’s Cyber Security Roundtable, has been a guest instructor for a San Francisco based “Escape and Evasion” school, and has managed investigations and intelligence operations for several Fortune 500 companies and international financial firms.    Brian is a Certified Private Security Instructor in the Commonwealth of Virginia, has been certified in various disciplines by numerous law enforcement and intelligence organizations, and is a guest instructor for courses focused on social engineering, lie detection, and information elicitation.  Brian holds 3 undergraduate degrees and a Master’s of Criminal Justice from Boston University.

- Arianna Travaglini

Executive Assistant at Rift Recon

Posted in Advisor, Brian O'Shea, Humint, Intelligence, Rift Recon, Social Engineering, Striker Pierce

Rift Recon Appoints Brian O’Shea As Senior Intelligence Advisor

Posted on April 16, 2014 by Shopify API

With over 20 years of international security, risk, and intelligence experience, Brian O’Shea joins Rift Recon as Senior Intelligence Advisor and Trainer.

Rift Recon, a San Francisco-based physical security, risk and training firm, recently concluded its third public urban escape and evasion training, the “Art of Escape,” in the Downtown Bay Area. Though the prior trainings had been remarkably successful, March’s run was particularly so due to a brand new addition to the team: seasoned Intelligence and Solutions expert Brian O’Shea.  

O’Shea lends his considerable expertise in social engineering, improvised weapons, risk avoidance, and many more subjects. He is a certified and experienced instructor with credentials from the U.S. Intelligence Community and a professional license from a state private security regulating authority. As part of Rift Recon, he brings a crucial skill set to the team, rounding out Rift’s already “Best in Class” offerings.

“We teach these skills because we want all of our clients, students and friends to be safe, no matter where they are,” states O’Shea, “Hostile situations can be overcome by having the proper training and exposure.”

“Brian’s resume and experience speaks for itself. He has been an intelligence collector all over the world, has authored and executed numerous risk and security plans for some of the world’s top executives, and has established active networks all over the world for his own survival,” said Rift CEO Eric Michaud.

O’Shea complements the existing skills of the company with his own. Michaud has been featured in numerous publications on related subjects, has an active client list for those requiring unique security and risk solutions, and has recently been invited to teach workshops at the Annual Oslo Freedom Forum this May in Oslo, Norway. As an accomplished instructor, it was of paramount importance to Michaud that any addition to the company be an engaging and established educator.

“The most important thing is that Brian knows how to connect with the students and allows them to build their own solutions with a very effective, interactive and empathetic style of teaching,” Michaud adds, “I am thrilled to welcome him on board the Rift Recon Team!”

For more on Rift Recon’s Art of Escape and other training, products, and consulting offerings, please visit

About Rift Recon

Founded in 2013, Rift Recon is a premiere physical security agency comprised of researchers, former military and private security detail contractors, and computer and hardware hackers that equips its clients from a suite of exclusive services including specialized trainings, hardware tampering and forensics work, assessment reports, tool creation and team outfitting. Visit or follow @RiftRecon on Twitter for more information.

About Brian O’Shea

Brian O’Shea is an international security, risk, and intelligence consultant to several Fortune 500 CEOs and NGO leaders.  Brian started his career as a trained Arabic linguist and led several small intelligence and collection teams while serving in 5th and 1st Special Forces.  Brian has also contracted with several government intelligence agencies and performed counter terror, counter proliferation, and special activities in South America, the Middle and Near East, South East Asia, and Europe.  Brian also is the owner of Striker Pierce LLC in Virginia, a boutique investigative and solutions firm. Brian has a Master’s in Criminology from Boston University, is a Certified Private Security Instructor, and has over 20 years of related experience.  Brian now is the Senior Intelligence and Risk Advisor for Rift Recon.  Brian instructs Rift’s Clients in Best Practices in order to avoid capture, harm, and potentially dangerous situations in domestic and overseas environments.  Brian was also featured in Janine Driver’s book “You Can’t Lie to Me” in which he teaches readers about body language reading, manipulation, and base lining. For more on Brian O’Shea please visit

Posted in advisor, brian o'shea, eric michaud, Rift Recon