Intel gathered in Abu Sayyaf raid being used to take on Daesh

Published June 9th, 2015 - 05:11 GMT

Intelligence gathered in the U.S. commando raid on Daesh financier Abu Sayyaf last month is now being used to locate other Daesh leaders and track the group’s financial operations, AFP reported on Tuesday.

The New York Times said an estimated four to seven terabytes of data were extracted from laptops, cell phones and other devices recovered during the raid. The information was then used to track down and kill Abu Hamid, another Daesh leader, in an airstrike in eastern Syria on May 31.

Daesh has not yet confirmed his death.

"I'll just say from that raid we're learning quite a bit that we did not know before," said senior State Department official last week. The data recovered in the raid showed that about half of the profits Daesh receives from oil sales is used for a “general operating budget,” while the remainder is used to maintain oil facilities and pay workers.

The information also included insights into how Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, the group’s leader, stays out of reach from Western spy services. When regional Daesh leaders meet in Raqqa, each militant is required to turn in their mobile phones driver, AFP reported, citing the New York Times.

US Army commandos were able to detail Sayyaf’s wife in the raid, but not Abu Sayyaf himself, who was killed in the raid.

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