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Keywords:

  • BioCaster;
  • EpiSPIDER;
  • HealthMap;
  • automated biosecurity intelligence;
  • open-source information

Summary

Three web-based biosecurity intelligence systems – BioCaster, EpiSPIDER and HealthMap – are compared with respect to their ability to gather and analyse information relevant to public health. Reports from each system for the period 2–30 August 2010 were studied. The systems were compared to the volume of information that they acquired, their overlaps in this information, their timeliness, their sources, their focus on different languages and their focus on different geographical regions. Main results were as follows: EpiSPIDER obtains the most information and does so mainly through Twitter; no significant difference in systems’ timeliness was found; there is a relatively small overlap between the systems (10–20%); the systems have significant differences in their ability to acquire information relevant to different countries, which may be due to the sources they use and the languages they focus on.