OSINT: Open Source Intelligence A Beginners Guide
Today in this post we are going to tell you the basic of OSINT, which will give the basic understanding of OSINT, after finishing this osint tutorial I guarantee that you will try to did deeper into it, as this tutorial is absolutely for beginners, you don't need to have any prior experience or never heard the word OSINT then that's not even a problem.
In this osint for beginners tutorial, we are going to Cover
- What is Osint
- Osint Tutorial
- OSINT methodology
- OSINT Techniques
- OSINT Tools
What is OSINT?
OSINT: Open Source Intelligence is a technique used to gather open-source data from various freely available resources for a specific purpose
OSINT is not limited to Cyber Security, its Scope is even wider, this osint for dummies post will show you the path so that you can use it for many reasons.
The main purpose of Open Source Intelligence is to Gather Data that can be used for investigation, This may sound simple but its power is unbelievable, by using this power one can utilise their intelligence
In the first phase what you need to know is the data we gather using OSINT may be different for different purposes and it differs from person to person but the techniques we use are the same,
For suppose a journalist can gather data for checking fake news, a pentester gathers data for finding loopholes, while big companies gather the data to make more money
Here is a real-life scenario where OSINT plays a major role,
so let's talk about me
As a blogger, my goal is to bring more traffic to this blog and make more money, so I try to understand my reader's minds then gathers data from different resources and do some analysis think how I can deliver a better an article that users may easily understand and keep reading, I write according to it, then publish articles hoping that it will give satisfaction to users
In the same way, big companies gather data using OSINT about their Competitors and analyze the data about their customer's behaviour, sales, business logic, management and so on then they try to follow the same strategy with little modification to improve their businesses
OSINT is not limited to individuals or companies, the same can be used by Law Enforces, Hackers, Journalists, Criminals
Why you should learn OSINT?
Well OSINT is all about gathering data and doing making a report of it, then how this may help others like you and me?
Then here are some key reasons why you should learn so
Who doesn't want fun right?
OSINT is sometimes fun, you're not just gathering data about organizations, companies, you can do even more
With the help of OSINT, you can know who is doing what, who is going where, who is eating what
You can even know what happening around you, interested to know who tweets what and from where,
What happening in your locality, what are the upcoming events, and what are the hot products that are gonna launch this week
Not limited to this, even more
The second reason is
You may not interested in having fun, but interested to know
For example, let's see how I was interested to know
As an infosec guy, I was more interested in Cyber Security, for that, I do OSINT for knowing who hacked what, what is trending in infosec, and that are the latest Vulnerability discoveries in this week, what are the software releases, and so on.
The knowledge tastes different for different people, for example, if you're a movie lover, you may be interested in movies, for that you want to know what are the movies going to release this month,
The same way another guy, might be interested in knowing cricket events, so he is eager is to know what are the upcoming matches, and where the matches to place, which team gonna be the best
By using OSINT Techniques you can choose your own way to improve your knowledge that may be any field you wish
When it comes to the online world, privacy matters a lot, because you're not alone in this world, the same OSINT is applicable for Criminals, Law Enforces, Government
Your data including name, age, date of birth, phone number, the location may be worthless for you but companies make billions with the data
Once You learn then you will realise how powerful OSINT is
Who does OSINT?
- Law enforces
- Terrorist Organizations
How to use OSINT
You know what is OSINT and how OSINT is useful, in this
osint for beginners guide, we are covering some basic information
gathering methods for OSINT
Image credit: OWASP
OSINT techniques and resources
We are gonna use Free and Open Source Tools to gather information, note that doxing is a little bit different from OSINT
In doxing, we use the same tools to find info about a person or the organisation, but in OSINT we target a particular topic
Here we will gather the information related to a topic by using various tools then the end we will make a collection of information then do an analysis
In this tutorial, We are just giving you the basic knowledge of OSINT, but in
our upcoming articles we will try to explain well
When it comes to OSINT, google dorks play a major role, firstly everyone starts with search engines, google gives us various options to filter and search
Also known as dorks, you should not always depend on google, there are other search engines as well
Shodan is also a search engine, but it is widely used by cybersecurity professionals, hackers use shodan to gather information about new Vulnerability, and to know how many machines are affected by a new CVE etc...
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Maltego is an open-source information gathering tool, and it's easy to use the tool, where you can gather data and make analysis, the community version is too good to get started
https://archive.org This is a Website that keeps records of old pages, sometimes while gathering data some domains may be expired and no longer available to access, then, in that case, we use this website
https://osintframework.com/ is an awesome collection of tools that we use while gathering data,
On that Website, you will find some useful tools which you can use for OSINT, most of them are free or has community versions
Note that OSINT is a wider topic and the data we gather and the tools we use maybe different for different people, suppose a hacker who gathers data using the OSINT tools is may differ than a Journalist use
This tutorial is a basic introduction only, upcoming articles we will try to cover more, if you like our post helpful then let us know in the comments section