October 26, 2021 by Ally Donnelly
Hingham’s John Serafini is the CEO of a company called HawkEye 360. It’s a radio frequency and data analytics firm that uses space-based satellites to detect, locate and analyze data from devices like walkie-talkies, satellite phones and radar. Clients include the US government, some of its allies and clients Serafini can’t release publicly. "A lot of our work occurs both in the classified and confidential realm," Serafini said.
HawkEye’s technology has applications in national defense, homeland security, environmental protection and other areas. “There’s $3 to $5 trillion worth of negative externalities that occur in the global maritime environment,” he said. “Things like illegal fishing, which is a $30 billion a year problem, drug trafficking, human smuggling, piracy, oil sanction violations, just horrific tragedies of the common that occur all around us because there aren’t great technologies to detect the bad activity.
Serafini says HawkEye’s technology is a game changer. “What we can do with our satellites is detect vessel activity and be able to track vessels, particularly those vessels that do not want to be found, ones that try to make themselves 'dark.' The presumption is that they’re likely behaving in an illegal manner, be it fishing or smuggling, or perhaps they are vessels that are masquerading as fishing vessels, but are actually agents of a foreign Navy, etcetera. We can detect these vessels, we can track them, we can start to extract intelligence about what they’re doing.”
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