Today I would like to talk about how to become a good OSINT investigator, but to continue the conversation I would like to make a small disclaimer - I will tell you only some aspects because the topic is very vast and I can not describe everything in one article, however, I will try to show you the way and how to pass this path.
To begin with, I want to say that I will consider OSINT as a set of skills or a mindset, because it can be directly related to doxing, military GEO-INT performed by a security company employee or just media OSINT performed by a VC fund employee in order to find new projects for investment, taking the theory of handshakes as a basis. Or even a crypto-forensics specialist investigating a major Web3.0 hack case. In other words, it can be used in all spheres of life because it is only a method of working with, assessing and ranking information - do not ever forget that we are all living in the Information Era.
All of what I said above you can develop in yourself, but the essence of all directions is the same - the ability to notice in the flow of information valuable information, anomalies, see the differences, carefully analyze the facts and build a logical chain. Today I would like to give you the first lesson, all resources which I will advise you - I studied by myself earlier:
First, let's break down such a concept as mind-mapping. It is very important to teach how to sort information according to different criteria, I think you can practice sorting absolutely any information.
Didn't everyone make cheat sheets at school? It's time to do it again, because in the future it should evolve into a Maltego skill.
I can recommend that you turn to an interesting subculture that is suitable for introverts! I am sure that everyone is interested in various strange phenomena in one way or another. Immerse yourself in a net-stalking environment. Sometimes ordinary people were able to solve crimes which the police could not solve for years with OSINT and GEOINT alone (I could put in here links to subreddits, movies and news bulletins but since you and I are now doing OSINT I advise you to find it yourself. A little tip - use searches with different IPs, over different time ranges on different search engines.
The main thing is to remember your health, it is above all, do not let your principles be shaken by what you see. You are an observer. Here well helps to understand the psychology of SCP researchers (when nothing is clear, but the scientific method helps to put everything in its place).
Keep in mind that in this part of the Global Internet (I mean OSINT in general, not only the Net-stalking), the percentage of people who are actively looking for problems or need to express their emotions is no different from other places. So, follow OpSec rules and don't make too many mistakes. Conduct your activities from a separate, isolated device.
Once you can distinguish the information, sort it out then the next thing you can do is start practicing. As you know, good practice requires good motivation, and most likely at this point our paths will separate.
Here is a very good brain-stretching game will help to train associative thinking - a very important skill for anyone in OSINT:
twitter.com/cyb_detective - tools and awesome data
twitter.com/UKOSINT — news, tools, jokes
twitter.com/dutch_osintguy — famous specialist, speaker
twitter.com/jakecreps — he posts awesome tools every Thursday
twitter.com/OSINTtechniques — follow the Digital Bread Crumbs
twitter.com/OSINTHK — volunteers using OSINT
twitter.com/OSINT_Research — tools and awesome data
twitter.com/OSINTtechniques —tools and awesome data
twitter.com/OsintJobs — jobs in OSINT
www.reddit.com/r/OSINT/ — the biggest thematic subReddit
Some will enjoy analyzing images, satellite images, calculating time and place from the angle of shadows from a photo, or measuring mountain peak size in order to perform private detective investigations. Or doing OSINT in crypto, for example, in which case your motivation will be money and self-fulfillment. Read my channel if you like this topic. Or someone can get into AD-INT which is growing day-by-day right now. For GEOINT skills training I suggest checking geoguessr.com & whereami.io.
You may want to de-anonymize telegram users (read this channel) or, conversely, join the ranks of counter-OSINT bros. But in doing so, I urge you not to forget the key skills of information retrieval, information analytics, and information application.
I'll highlight some basic advice for you - evaluate information according to different criteria, always know your "base settings" - it's good for the mental health, the things you find shouldn't ruin your foundations. Practice it, do it in your daily life, apply OSINT where it seems un-obvious like mentioned below:
Join communities, of course and chat, chat! Above I've only mentioned English-speaking communities but there are also local ones, do some research on your own. I’m 100% sure in you! You will succeed!
Carefully study these resources and come back to them as you journey through the world of the hornets, don't forget the roots. This article does not answer questions, but rather raises some rhetorical questions to encourage you to think about something.
Thank you so much for reading till the end, I will try to formulate my thoughts and write some more articles on this topic in future!
May the Force be with you!
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