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12 Ingenious OSINT Tools You Should Know About

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You might hear the term “OSINT” referred to and attribute it to cybersecurity professionals, investigative journalists, and law enforcement officers. Of course, these professionals use OSINT to gain valuable open-source knowledge about people, systems, and organizations, but you can also perform OSINT.

The internet has so much information available to the public; you just need to know how to find it. But what tools can you use for OSINT? You’ll find out below, but first we’ll briefly discuss OSINT.

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What is OSINT?

OSINT stands for open source intelligence. Open source refers to information or programs made readily available and distributable by the public. And intelligence is the ability to acquire and apply knowledge.

Open Source Intelligence (OSINT) is the process of researching, collecting, and analyzing information from publicly available sources to produce valuable intelligence. Sources of open source intelligence include the Internet, social media, academic and professional journals, newspapers, television, and even breaches.

Performing open source intelligence manually is undoubtedly a Herculean task. There are simply too many records and data to sift through. Fortunately, many tools have been created to automate and speed up the OSINT process. With these tools, you can get a lot of information about a specific organization and person in seconds. Many OSINT tools are free, but a few require subscriptions.

Here are 12 free OSINT tools you can use from the comfort of your home:

1. OSINT Framework

The OSINT framework is a website containing different tools that you can use to realize open source information in different sections or knowledge bases. It includes sections such as email addresses, social media, domain names, search engines, public records, documentation, and even phone numbers.

Suppose you choose a section like social media; this leads to a list of subsections like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Reddit, LinkedIn, etc. For example, if you click on Twitter, it also leads to another section that lists research, analytics, images, location, and archived/deleted tweets. Opening analytics leads to OSINT Twitter tools like tweet metadata, Birdwatcher, Tinfoleak, etc.

So you have an idea of ​​the depth of the OSINT framework. This is your go-to website for your OSINT tools and resources.

2. Time Machine

The Wayback Machine is a digital archive of the World Wide Web and the Internet. It is used to manage, capture and archive snapshots of websites over a period of time. It browses various websites and takes screenshots of them to preserve internet history. You can even contribute to the archives by saving a snapshot of a website for future citation.

The Wayback Machine is very easy to use and free. You simply enter the URL of the website you want to search, then choose a date from the timeline, calendar, and timestamps provided. This OSINT tool contains over 699 billion saved web pages. Here is an image from the MakeUseOf website on April 6, 2007.

3. Maltego

Maltego is an OSINT tool filled with lots and lots of data. It helps researchers to graphically analyze their research and results. More importantly, Maltego uses charts and tables to create links between people, organizations, aliases, documents, email addresses, IP addresses, etc. It can be downloaded on Windows, Linux, and Mac, and it comes preinstalled in Kali Linux.

4. I was overpowered

Have I Been Pwned is a free website resource created by Troy Hunt to allow users to check if their emails or phone numbers were leaked during a data breach. The website is simple; just enter your name or phone number in the search field, and it will search through the breaches to see if your credentials have been compromised.

5.Shodan

Shodan is a search engine that allows you to search the Internet and various web servers connected to it. This means that using Shodan, you can explore its database for internet-connected devices such as routers, Internet of Things (IoT) devices, monitors, security cameras, traffic lights, etc. , all of which are publicly available on the Internet.

6. TinEye

TinEye is a reverse image search and image recognition website that uses computer vision, pattern recognition, neural networks, and machine learning to provide fast and accurate search solutions. To use TinEye, simply upload the image whose information you want to the website. The site will retrieve information about the location, origin, usage, and even higher resolutions of the image.

7. ZoomEye

ZoomEye is a search engine created by a Chinese security company, Knownsec Inc. It is used to search not only people and organizations, but also IP addresses, files and even icons. Like Maltego, it gives a graphical analysis of the intelligence produced, using chats, graphs and images.

Censys Search is a web search engine used for intelligence and open source research. Just like Shodan, it searches the internet for servers and internet-connected devices. It also identifies industrial control systems and platforms connected to the Internet.

9. Built with

BuiltWith is a service that analyzes a website to see the technology and programming languages ​​used to build it. It is a website profiler, business intelligence, lead generation and competitive analysis tool. Just search the website and it will show everything you need to know about the technology it uses.


10.Nmap

Nmap stands for Network Mapper. Nmap is a free network and port scanner used to discover service operating systems, hosts and open ports running on a network or website. It is available on the web and supported on all operating systems.

11. Recognition

Recon-ng is a web reconnaissance tool used for open source intelligence. It is used to collect information about websites, IP addresses and their subdomains.

12. The Harvester

TheHarvester is an OSINT tool for collecting information about emails, websites, subdomains, employee names, open ports, virtual hosts, and banners.

There are tons of tools on the internet to make your open source intelligence journey easier. If you’re unsure which tool to use, be sure to check out the OSINT framework for free OSINT tools and resources. Remember that OSINT is not just for information security experts. Anyone can perform OSINT, including you.