Open Source Intelligence (OSINT) refers to the process of collecting, analyzing, and disseminating information that is publicly available and legally obtainable.It is used by organizations and individuals to gather and sort wide intelligence bits of information about a wide spectrum of topics and legal entities, including specific individuals, all types of companies and organizations, events, and trends.
Many sources feed the OSINT tool-
OSINT can gather information from a wide range of sources, including social media, websites, news articles, public records, and other publicly available data. Some of the specific types of information that OSINT is capable of gathering include:
What are some easy bits of info you can find on people with OSINT?
Personal information: OSINT can obtain information about individuals, such as their name, age, location, employment history, and education.
Market and business research and analysis-
Organizational information: OSINT helps to gather information about organizations, such as their structure, operations, financial status, and leadership.
information about events, such as conference dates, trade shows participants and keynote speakers.
OSINT can collect & display information about actual trends as they unfold in real time as it scans thru various social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and others. It may definitely be useful in recognizing emerging technologies, social movements, and cultural shifts.
As OSINT is a very powerful tool for gathering information and intelligence it is used by many; including law enforcement agencies, intelligence agencies, business investigators, and even private individuals.
What type of personal information is collected?
Personal information refers to any information that pertains to an individual person, such as their name, age, location, employment history, and education. Just think of your social profile on LinkedIn, facebook, and other platforms, all the data you supply about your self is there for the “scraping”!
OSINT can be used to gather personal information about individuals from a wide range of sources, including:
- social media
- news articles
- public records
- and other publicly available data.
How can an organization benefit from Using OSINT?
For example, an organization can use OSINT to gather information about almost any individual in order to make a hiring decision or to investigate an employee’s past comments on social media, it can be used also to vet a new business partner.
OSINT works both ways… not just for large companies, it serves the “little man” as well.
On the other side, as an employee, a person will be able to use OSINT and investigate more about a potential employer, about the company, other key members of the organization, and its general past activities that were reported and documented online in open libraries.
Dating and love life also can be affected by OSINT
On the personal love and dating side of things, a person might utilize OSINT phone number lookup or reverse email lookup in order to gather information about someone they are dating and see if they are who they say they are 😉
It’s important to note that not all personal information is publicly available, and some types of personal information are protected by privacy laws.
Use OSINT ethically and responsibly!
It’s also important to respect individuals’ privacy and to use OSINT ethically and responsibly.