Bellingcat: A New Tool Shows What War Has Done to Ukraine’s Forests. “We’ve launched the ‘OSINT Forest Area Tracker’, hosted on Google Earth Engine. Our tool compares data collected by Sentinel-2, a satellite which detects changes in infrared wavelengths and can be used to study the health of forests. The tool reveals the scale and intensity of anomalous changes on land. This narrows down search areas for researchers working on environmental damage in Ukraine.”
Bellingcat: Solving World War II Photo Mysteries With Open Source Techniques. “…the ‘Finding the location WW1 & WW2’ Facebook group seeks to employ geolocation techniques to identify where unknown and undated images from the first and second World Wars were taken. Recently, Bellingcat was able to uncover new information about a series of photos from the International Bomber Command Centre (IBCC) archives that were posted to this Facebook group. The techniques used to locate the photos are easily transferable to other scenarios.”
I’ve made v2 of Gossip Machine and it’s about 1000% better! I made the first version of Gossip Machine last summer. It uses Wikipedia pageview data to find days when Wikipedia articles got especially busy traffic. Those dates are then turned into single-day Google searches. This version analyzes only a month of page views at a time. For each day it generates a z-score. Z-scores above 1 are filtered and presented in order of Z-score, with a red bar indicating how busy the page was compared to the mean for the month. As with all the Gizmos, it’s free and there are no ads except for a Patreon banner.
I’ve created a list of most available Gizmos at https://searchgizmos.com/biglist/ . There are 45 Gizmos listed with categories including Wikipedia, Google Web search, Google News search, and location-based search tools. Everything’s free and there are no ads, but it probably won’t work on your phone.
Business Insider: The college student who tracks Elon Musk’s private jet on Twitter is now monitoring the jet used by Ron DeSantis
Business Insider: The college student who tracks Elon Musk’s private jet on Twitter is now monitoring the jet used by Ron DeSantis. “The college student who tracks Elon Musk’s private jet on Twitter has decided to give Florida governor Ron DeSantis the same treatment.”
Investigative Stories from Ukraine: Journalists map military facilities in Russian-occupied Crimea (Kyiv Independent)
Kyiv Independent: Investigative Stories from Ukraine: Journalists map military facilities in Russian-occupied Crimea . “Crimea.Realities, a project of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, launched an interactive map showing 233 active and frozen military facilities in Crimea, the Ukrainian peninsula occupied by Russia since 2014. They include military airfields, naval bases, docks, arsenals, supply warehouses, military towns, military units, rotations of air defense locations, training grounds, and military-industrial enterprises.”
Global Investigative Journalism Network: 4 More Essential Tips for Using the Wayback Machine . “The previous edition of Digital Investigations offered advice for getting the most out of the Wayback Machine. Now I’m back with even more tips, thanks to an interview with Mark Graham, director of the Wayback Machine. He pointed to a few features I forgot to mention along with one I wasn’t aware of.”
Find It, Vet It, Share It: The US Government’s Open-Source Intelligence Problem And How To Fix It (Modern War Institute at West Point)
Modern War Institute at West Point: Find It, Vet It, Share It: The US Government’s Open-Source Intelligence Problem And How To Fix It. “Throughout this process we routinely faced challenges in maximizing the value of open-source information. More specifically, we encountered problems in three areas: collection, vetting and analysis, and sharing content. We attempted several methods to address these deficiencies, with varying degrees of success, but our experiences laid bare a fundamental truth: better solutions are required to ensure US and ally information warfare capabilities are prepared for future crises.”
WIRED: Online Sleuths Untangle the Mystery of the Nord Stream Sabotage. ” Open source intelligence (OSINT) researchers are using public sources of data in their efforts to verify or debunk the snippets of information published about the Nord Stream explosions. They’re providing a glimpse of clarity to an incident that’s shrouded by secrecy and international politics.”
The Conversation: How to use free satellite data to monitor natural disasters and environmental changes
The Conversation: How to use free satellite data to monitor natural disasters and environmental changes . “I work with geospatial big data as a professor. Here’s a quick tour of where you can find satellite images, plus some free, fairly simple tools that anyone can use to create time-lapse animations from satellite images. For example, state and urban planners – or people considering a new home – can watch over time how rivers have moved, construction crept into wildland areas or a coastline eroded.”
OCCRP: How a Montenegrin Gang Used Open-Source Intelligence to Kill. “Hitmen working for a criminal group active in Montenegro and Serbia used open-source intelligence techniques, poring over apartment listing sites, satellite images, and tourist photos posted online, to track down and kill the leader of a rival clan as he hid out in Greece.”
Craig Silverman / Digital Investigations: Getting the most out of the Wayback Machine. “Roughly a year ago, the Wayback Machine Chrome extension got a major update. The new version has useful customization features and the ability to connect it to your personal Wayback Machine account, making it an even more essential tool for journalists and investigators.”