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The Confidential Resource

Sources & Methods for the Investigator

Last Build Date: Thu, 14 Sep 2017 13:23:43 +0000



Thu, 14 Sep 2017 13:22:42 +0000

We have retired and will shortly take down this blog. We hope you have found it useful over the years.

Information Vs. Actionable Intelligence & the PI

Mon, 28 Nov 2016 17:01:29 +0000

I see many courses for Private Investigators (PIs) about using the Internet for Open Source Intelligence (OSINT). These courses are predominately about Internet sites that might yield useful information. These courses don’t teach how to process and analyse the captured data or how to properly report what was found. The OSINT concept usually misses the ... Read more

OSINT & Zombie Journals–Part 5

Mon, 07 Nov 2016 13:00:52 +0000

To improve your evaluation skills, develop three abilities: Maintain a skeptical mind-set. Learn which sources are most trustworthy. Learn to identify reporting errors and inconsistencies. If something does not look right, investigate its veracity. In addition, the skeptical investigator must develop a structured means of evaluating the relevance and reliability of the collected data along ... Read more

Economic & Political Wisdom

Thu, 03 Nov 2016 14:52:09 +0000

Give a man a fish, and you feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish, and you feed him for a lifetime. Steal a fish from one guy and give it to another–and keep doing that on a daily basis–and you’ll make the first guy pissed off, but you’ll make the second guy ... Read more

OSINT & Zombie Journals–Part 4

Mon, 31 Oct 2016 13:00:42 +0000

Always keep in mind that, as the old pessimist philosopher Arnold Schopenhauer stated, “The truth will set you free–but first it will make you miserable.” The RICE Method of Evaluation Use the RICE method can help you decide on how to respond to information or intelligence: R for reliability. The basic truthfulness or accuracy of ... Read more

OSINT & Zombie Journals—Part 3

Mon, 24 Oct 2016 13:08:45 +0000

Understanding the Need for Evaluation Methods & Citations The basis of your evaluation method is understanding that you cannot know what you don’t know. However, as you come to terms with this, you can guard against the perils of the Dunning-Kruger Effect. Dunning-Kruger Effect There is a saying that “you cannot know what you do ... Read more

Jamming Remote Controls

Thu, 20 Oct 2016 13:00:01 +0000

The range of issues I get involved in always amazes me. I recently had a client ask me for solutions to garage door and gate remote jammers. Jammers are simple devices that transmit enough radio frequency noise to prevent a legitimate signal from activating the garage door or gate. These remote systems operate in the ... Read more

A Brief History of Open Source Intelligence

Wed, 19 Oct 2016 13:00:18 +0000

An article with the above title appeared on the bellingcat site. It is an excellent article even if I don’t agree that OSINT went into hibernation after WW2. For example, from after WW2 until the Cold War ended, in the US, the Foreign Broadcast Information Service, which is now the Open Source Enterprise and in the ... Read more

OSINT & Zombie Journals—Part 2

Mon, 17 Oct 2016 13:00:11 +0000

The Nature of Sources Primary & Secondary Sources An archive is a primary source because the contents are documents usually authored by a person with direct knowledge of the topic; this includes public records completed by the subject. A library is a secondary source because its documents are created from the primary sources, as are ... Read more

Proximity Search on Google-Free Wednesday

Wed, 12 Oct 2016 13:00:41 +0000

The international version of Yandex, the Russian search engine, has a collection of advanced commands that include a proximity operator that is extremely useful for drilling down to what your really want. For example, a search statement might be, “opec & saudi” (in same sentence) or “opec && saudi” (in same page). There is also ... Read more