OSINT (Open Source Intelligence) : Application, Tools, Process & more

Why Is OSINT So Important ?

OSINT (Open-Source Intelligence) is intelligence collected from publicly available sources.

It is becoming a key resource for collecting threat intelligence even in enterprise space. A factor being that now we live in a very connected world, so the amount of data and analysis is becoming more key and relevant. A good example here would be the Stuxnet attack. 

Open Source Movement was also a reason for the push for OSINT usage.

OSINT can find great use in the fields and sectors like Goverment, Defence, Banking, Finance, Telecom, Critical Infrastructure, Cyber Security Advisory Firms, Cyber Threat Intelligence Teams, Law, Cyber Forensic Teams.

Typical OSINT Process

It will include (in order)

  • Source Identification
  • Data Harvesting
  • Data Processing & Integration
  • Data Analysis
  • Results Delivery

This process could be time based leading to offensive or defensive OSINT. Studying before the attack makes it defensive and post attack would be offensive.

OSINT Workshops at SACON

SACON (Security Architecture Conference) 2018 has OSINT workshops by industry experts. Pre-Registrations Open for best discounts.

>> Pre-Register for SACON 2018

OSINT Tool Examples

Palantir, I2 - Commercial products.

Maltego - free and commercial version. Free has some limitations

NodeXL - completely free. An extension to excel. Allows data mining, visualization, some machine learning & clustering capabilities

SpiderFoot - a combination of VA and OSINT that can be automated/scheduled to run from time to time. It automatically queries over 100 public data sources (OSINT) to gather intelligence on IP addresses, domain names, e-mail addresses, names etc.

ShodanHQ - google like search engine for all devices connected to the internet. Initially called Google Hacking Database. It focuses on identifying and connecting to anything reachable via a public IP.

Some other tools could be namely - FOCA, Tapir, Creepy, theHarvester, Metagoofil

OSINT Workshops at SACON

SACON (Security Architecture Conference) 2018 has OSINT workshops by industry experts. Pre-Registrations Open for best discounts.

>> Pre-Register for SACON 2018

Reference :

Pointers were derived from a talk at Annual Summit 2015 here and Offensive OSINT Talk from Black hat here

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