What Is Open Source Intelligence?

Businesses today must survive under the conditions of constant vigorous competition, and new ways of securing positions and reputation continue to emerge. Open-source intelligence is one type of information that can be used to your advantage for improving your company and collecting more data about competitors. What is OSINT? This is a piece of information in a public domain, which you can acquire with the help of Social Links tools and filter it for your specific purposes. Modern businesses require modern technical solutions for improvement, which is why OSINT becomes so widely used.

The Use of OSINT

Companies usually collect this kind of intelligence to have a better picture of opponents and their operations. This also helps with developing approaches for the expansion and improvement of your business. Given that these data are in a public domain on the web, working with OSINT is a great solution for small organizations with low budgets. Some other purposes of using open-source intelligence include:

  • Increasing data protection – OSINT can help with increasing your data security and protecting it from leakage or cyber theft. Badly protected networks fall victim to hackers, which is why gathering intelligence can increase your safety.

  • Developing strategies – with OSINT, you can develop new ways of protecting the data, reputation, financial status, and client base of various companies.

The security industry, whether it handles Internet safety or real-life security, can benefit greatly from open-source intelligence. In this case, it is crucial to gather as much information about your surroundings as possible to protect yourself. With OSINT, it is also possible to test the weaknesses of your online security and try to breach it within the company. The data received from such trial attacks are extremely valuable, and they will help you with preventing real hacker attacks in the future.

Different companies utilize OSINT solutions to uncover insurance scams. This technology helps with gathering background data on both parties and evaluating all the evidence to determine whether there was a fraud or not. This is a very useful and reliable way of testing insurance fraud claims.

Methods of Using OSINT Solutions

All the data collected with OSINT can be categorized into different groups. All the information can be structured or unstructured based on the method of obtaining it. By analyzing all the gathered information, you can receive the intelligence for future use. Here are some of the methods of receiving the data:

  • Manual data searching

  • Metadata of web pages (information stored in the HTML code of the page)

  • Application Programming Interfaces (various search engines can offer access to certain data)

  • Social media platforms

  • Gray literature (various non-commercial publications, reports, white papers, evaluations, etc.)

  • Deep and Dark Web data (these parts of the web can be accessed only with the help of special browsers and search engines. They are unavailable from Google or other engines people commonly use)

After data are collected, it is necessary to structure and analyze them to receive their value. OSINT tools help examine the information obtained and apply the received knowledge to different causes. The demand for OSINT continues to grow as the information received through such a method increases in value.


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