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Open Source Investigations

Utilizing Open Internet Sources to Facilitate Active Investigations

Course Overview
Open source investigations utilize free, unsecured websites to search for real world criminal activity.  There is no trickery in open source investigations, it is not a way to get past usernames and passwords; it’s simply a way to obtain what a criminal posts (names, pictures, videos, conversations)  in open, and public forums.  There is no need for search warrants, court orders, or subpoenas.

Internet usages is a mandatory requirement of modern life.  Social media and social service sites have become an extension of daily real-world activities for many people.  And just like law abiding citizens, criminals post proof of their daily activities online.  The separation that people feel between their online and real-life activities is well documented, but this false assumption gives law enforcement an advantage in the investigations and prevention of criminal activities.

Through a structured survey of available resources, law enforcement personnel will view, search and manage multiple open source sites and services in the search of criminals and criminal activities.  Portions of this course are hands-on and will require personnel to have a laptop with unfettered access to the internet (no site blocking software). Anti-virus software is highly recommended.

This course is designed for law enforcement personnel at all levels, with an emphasis on investigations and detective bureaus and their supervisors.  Authorized support staff will be admitted only with prior agency documentation.

Day One

  1. Technology: A historical perspective
  2. Open Source Investigation
  3. Search Engines
  4. Facebook & Twitter
  5. Online Maps and Photographs
  6. Historical/People Searches
  7. Social Network Traffic
  8. Hands-on Activities

Day Two

  1. Document Searches
  2. Business Networks
  3. Classifieds Auctions
  4. Dating Sites
  5. User Names and Emails, Telephone and Addresses
  6. Criminals
  7. Video Searches and IP Hosting 
  8. Online Forums
  9. Miscellaneous Records and Drug Information

Upcoming Classes

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There are currently no scheduled classes for this course.