Open Source Intelligence (OSINT) – Practicle Approach

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Information is a processed data that
contains some meaning, data is any raw facts and figure but when you
arrange or process data to make it meaningful it becomes information.
Information is the key of success for many operation specially
Intelligence operation; consider 9/11 scenario what was the weakness
of security agencies ? Obviously they did not have the information
regarding the attack (remember information). So lack of information
could be a weakness, but at the same if you have the right
information then it might become your strength. Hacking &
penetration testing process is also depends on the information that
you collect from information gathering process, the more information
that you have the more chances of success are.

Question arises regarding the
techniques and sources from where the information can be gathered,
Govt has its own way to gather information and intelligence agencies
also has their own. But what about a common man ? Yes infosec and
business community have worked in this direction now we have enough
sources and techniques to gather required information.

is OSINT ?

Open source INTelligence
(OSINT) is the process to collect information from publicly available
sources. Here open source does not mean the open-source software or
community, open-source in OSINT means publicly available sources.
  • Business intelligence
  • Govt intelligence
  • Individual intelligence
Business intelligence is required set
of information acquired through multiple sources, on the basis of
this data business decisions used to be made. Since the decisions are
based on the collected information so the process should be fair
enough to gather the right information. Competitor analysis and self
corporate analysis can be done on the basis of publicly available
Govt can use the information (available
publicly) for various purposes, for example the can read/understand
public opinion regarding the Govt policies. In election they can
understand public needs so that they can deliver what public want
(clever move :P)
Individual intelligence; if you really
want to know about yourself, I mean you know yourself but in some
cases you want to know that what other people think about you. So you
can gather information about yourself and then you can analysis your
reputation, marketer and public speakers are doing it to manipulate
the information available. Besides your own information you can look
into the life of other person (cyber stalking) ohh yes.
So far we have discussed the basis of
open source intelligence but this is not enough, the tools and
techniques to gather information need to be discussed. We have
previously discussed many tools and their usage to find information from different sources, in the next article of this series we will
discuss the tools (free tools) that can be used to gather information
from Internet.
Ehacking Staff
With more than 50 global partners, we are proud to count the world’s leading cybersecurity training provider. EH Academy is the brainchild of Ehacking, which has been involved in the field of training since the past Five years and continues to help in creating professional IT experts.

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