Open source intelligence

November 2017 Security Services & Risk Management

It is safe to assume that all private investigations practitioners are familiar with but not necessarily adept in the practice of the OSINT (open source intelligence) concept i.e. the legally and freely available access – if one has developed the curiosity and technical skills required – to a wide variety of local and/or international information sources which have become increasingly digitised and often made available on subscription.

OSINT has been traditionally used, in conjunction with other forms of information, to support a wide variety of both covert and overt due diligence, security, consumer and commercial intelligence related investigations. However, the number of such sources and the difficulties of keeping pace with their availability and then properly using them and the specific information available have grown exponentially (Google, Internet, Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, business web sites etc.). This problem has occurred over the last decade or so due to the sophistication, development and growth in related information sourcing, sharing and storage technologies.

A concurrent trend has been the demand by PI clients, legal firms, credit granters and many others – including governments for security and anti-terrorism reasons – for less generalised and more accurate, specific, nuanced and predictive information to support their decision-making processes.

A further obvious trend has been the retaliatory steps taken by authorities and businesses, via consumer privacy, data and information protection legislation and other data base security and anti-cybercrime measures, to prevent unauthorised access to such sources. This has occurred because of the abuse of access to OSINT, often for criminal or industrial espionage purposes e.g. stolen identifications, product and financial information, and the requirement, for business and contractual reasons, to protect against the misuse of shared data and information.

Simultaneous access to a vast array of OSINT sources has only become possible due to the development of electronically driven search engine software programs with variable drill down capacities which, when tasked, allow for the search and retrieval of specifically or generally requested information or data.

It is therefore arguable that any private investigations practitioner wishing to keep abreast of these trends, must understand and become adept with modern OSINT trends and requirements or run the risk of becoming obsolete.

For more information, contact SSC Security Consultants, +27 (0)11 786 8556, howard@sscinfo.co.za, www.sscinfo.co.za





Share this article:
Share via emailShare via LinkedInPrint this page



Further reading:

Stolen credentials on the Dark Web
October 2019 , Cyber Security, Security Services & Risk Management
Over 21 million credentials belonging to Fortune 500 companies, 16 million of which were compromised during the last 12 months, are up for sale.

Read more...
Stolen credentials on the Dark Web
October 2019 , Cyber Security, Security Services & Risk Management
Over 21 million credentials belonging to Fortune 500 companies, 16 million of which were compromised during the last 12 months, are up for sale.

Read more...
Vodacom and SAPS launch MySAPS mobile app
October 2019 , Security Services & Risk Management
Vodacom, in partnership with the South African Police Service, will empower citizens to contribute to their own safety as well as the safety of their communities through the newly launched MySAPS app.

Read more...
Enterprise security must change
October 2019 , Cyber Security, Security Services & Risk Management
The recent wave of cyberattacks against local banks has highlighted the importance of protecting data against malicious users.

Read more...
Drones improve risk management
October 2019 , Security Services & Risk Management
Indwe embraces drone technology to help improve risk management and optimise insurance.

Read more...
Body-worn cameras transforming security
October 2019 , CCTV, Surveillance & Remote Monitoring, Security Services & Risk Management
Police Service Northern Ireland now has over 7 000 officers using 2 500 cameras covering approximately 173 000 incidents each year.

Read more...
Protecting your customers’ data
October 2019 , Training & Education, Security Services & Risk Management
Simon Murrell, head of development and executive director at BrandQuantum says companies need to protect their customers from identity theft and data breaches.

Read more...
Success lies in planning
November 2019, Vox Telecom , Security Services & Risk Management
A safe and smart city will only be successful if it is planned properly, if there is buy-in from all the stakeholders and if it is managed efficiently.

Read more...
Matching governance to context
November 2019, ContinuitySA , Security Services & Risk Management
When building resilience and planning for business continuity, take proportionality to heart, advises Michael Davies, CEO of ContinuitySA.

Read more...
Essential tips for a successful disaster recovery plan
November 2019 , Security Services & Risk Management
Arcserve Southern Africa offers six crucial steps necessary to design a successful disaster recovery (DR) plan.

Read more...