OSINT versus online Forensics

Much has been discussed and written about online evidence and undoubtedly, more will follow. While this article will add to this running debate, the intention is to provide an overview to the online investigator to evaluate their own position together for the ultimate goal of the utilisation of their “evidence” albeit in OSINT or forensically.

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OSINT regarding water abuse ⊄

Cape Town South Africa has been in the midst of a serious drought which is so serious, recently the authorities increased the water restriction to level 6.

Attached is an OSINT report relating to suspected water abuse by the owners /caretakers of one residential home.

The purpose of this OSINT exercise is to demonstrate its effectiveness with carefully selected open sources of information followed by the application of investigation techniques and analysis to produce the OSINT product ultimately.  During the collection phase Hunchly was used for maintaining a diary of the investigation and a record.  This report is also attached.

OSINT Applied ⊄

OSINT Applied is a course that enhances an investigator’s ability to gather open source information on people, companies, groups and even countries using the world wide web as the primary source. The course will teach how to make use of methods and tools to search deeper for information on the web, retrieving data collected by for example database API’s used by Social Networks and others, scraping data and other collection methods together with skills development.  See the launch video HERE

Over 23,000 suspected money laundering cases reported ⊄

Banks, credit unions, and other financial institutions were responsible for the vast majority of 23,308 suspicious transaction reports which were passed to gardaí during 2016.

While no further action was required in around a third of cases, notifications resulted in 20 large-scale investigations being carried out, many linked to drug trafficking gangs.

Assets worth more than €4m were seized or frozen last year by various authorities including the Criminal Assets Bureau and the DPP’s assets seizing unit.

A further €6.3m in tax- related offences was identified by Revenue from information gathered from in excess of 80% of reports.

Information passed on to the authorities also led to 18 people being charged with money laundering offences.

In addition, nine people were convicted for offences based on information received in previous years.

The figures, which are contained in the Department of Justice’s annual report on money laundering and terrorist financing, reveals almost 14,900 alerts were raised by banks in 2016.

The Criminal Justice (Money Laundering and Terrorist Financing) Act 2010 places a number of obligations on a wide variety of businesses including financial institutions, accountants, auditors, legal professionals, stockbrokers, and private gambling clubs to report any suspicious financial transactions.

Anyone convicted of money laundering offences faces a potential jail term of up to 14 years and large fines.

Full article

Organised Crime definition

Organised crime is the proliferation of criminal commerce and racketeering maintained over a prolonged period of time through a continued membership of criminal associates with a configuration of vertical authority levels under leadership control with the primary objective of pursuing and protecting of illegal activities unrestricted by geographically boundaries.


Please note all discussions about specific issues relating to OSINT, investigations, intelligence and research have been moved to our new training site here All current users have already been moved to the new site.