by and for citizen investigative journalists

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May 29, 2016

By Chris Biggers

Algeria: Mers El Kebir Imagery Update

The latest commercial satellite imagery available in Google Earth shows some new developments at Mers El Kebir, Algeria’s second military region naval base subordinate to HQ in Algiers. Space snapshots acquired in February show the completion of a renovated Kilo berthing area now sporting three finger piers. The Kilo had relocated to two of the…

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May 28, 2016

By Bellingcat

Сторонники ИГ были вычислены в ходе акции в соцсетях

В субботу сторонники Исламского государства разместили в социальных сетях фотографии из крупных европейских городов с надписями в поддержку террористической организации. Эта акция прошла в преддверии выступления официального представителя ИГ Абу Мухаммада аль-Аднани. Фотографии сделаны на европейских улицах – как говорит Шира Франкел в своей статье на сайте BuzzFeed News World, для того, чтобы «внушить людям страх,…

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May 22, 2016

By Bellingcat

ISIS Had a Social Media Campaign, So We Tracked Them Down

On Saturday, numerous supporters of ISIS posted pictures on social media from major European cities, displaying messages of support for the group. This social media campaign was in support of an imminent speech from ISIS spokesperson Abu Mohammed al-Adnani. In these photographs, backgrounds of various European cities can be seen, with the intention of, as described…

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May 20, 2016

By John Arterbury

Расследование происшествия в Сирии: землетрясение или взрыв?

В понедельник появились сообщения о том, что боевики Исламского государства взорвали участки самого крупного месторождения природного газа в Сирии. За ними последовали предположения, что произошедшее в тот же день землетрясение было связано со взрывами. Возможна ли какая-либо зависимость между этими двумя событиями, и если да, то какая именно? Если учесть все сообщения в социальных сетях,…

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May 18, 2016

By John Arterbury

Investigating the “ISIS earthquake”

Reports on Monday that fighters from the Islamic State blew up portions of a major Syrian natural gas field have given rise to furious speculation that an earthquake on the same day was somehow related. But is such a connection likely, and if so, how might it have happened? Given the confluence of social media…

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May 17, 2016

By Syrian Archive

Видеоархив атак российской авиации на гражданское население Сирии

На сайте «Сирийский архив» (“Syrian Archive”) имеется видеоархив всех случаев, когда сообщалось о гибели или ранениях гражданского населения в результате российских авиаударов с 30 сентября 2015 года. Это только один из видеоархивов, собранных «Сирийским архивом». Мы продолжаем работать над сбором данных и созданием баз видеосвидетельств нарушений, совершаемых всеми сторонами конфликта в Сирии. В базе данных…

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May 13, 2016

By Chris Biggers

Update: ROK Jeju Island Naval Base

As South Korea readies to boost naval diplomacy in the region by hosting Pacific Reach 2016, new satellite imagery of the recently inaugurated Jeju island naval base was made available in Google Earth. The recent space snapshots acquired in March show several completed site improvements including new administrative and support buildings, athletic fields, roads, an extensive peninsular…

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May 12, 2016

By Bellingcat

Новое видео колонны с «Буком сепаратистов» в Украине

3 мая 2016 года на YouTube было загружено новое видео, на котором, по-видимому, запечатлена колонна, перевозившая «Бук» по территории востока Украины, контролируемой сепаратистами, 17 июля 2014 года. 11 мая это видео обнаружили пользователи Твиттера @amishjihadi и @loondale. На видео видны несколько деталей, указывающих, что это та же СОУ (самоходная огневая установка), которую засняли перемещающейся к…

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May 12, 2016

By Bellingcat

Possible new sighting of MH17 Buk convoy on July 17th 2014 in Ukraine

On May 3rd 2016, a new video of what appears to be the July 17th 2014 Buk convoy was uploaded to YouTube, and was on May 11th discovered by Twitter users @amishjihadi and @loondale. In the video, there are several details visible which seem to indicate this is the same Buk TELAR that has been…

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May 11, 2016

By Oryx

The Islamic State going DIY, the Telskuf offensive

Just six days after the release of the now infamous footage showing fighters of the Islamic State fighting, failing and getting killed while storming Peshmerga positions North of Mosul, the Islamic State made another attempt at taking Peshmerga positions on the 3rd of May 2016 near the Assyrian town of Tesqopa (or Telskuf, Tel Eskof,…

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May 13, 2016

By Syrian Archive

Dataset of Russian Attacks Against Syria’s Civilians

The Syrian Archive maintains an extensive video database of all known allegations in which civilians have been reported killed or injured by Russia since September 30th 2015. This is one of the datasets that the Syrian Archive has collected, and we will continue working on collecting and creating other video datasets of violations by all…

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May 3, 2016

By Nick Waters

The Importance of OSINT: Misinformation and Verification of Conflict Media

On the 25 February 2016 a video (Video 1) was posted in the video site “Liveleak.com” titled “Shelling of Checkpoint in Ukraine” with the description “Reports suggest the pro-Russian separatists fired on the Police checkpoint in Yasinovataya, Ukraine”. It is just one video amongst the huge amount of information produced and posted on the internet…

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May 2, 2016

By Justin Seitz

Expanding Skype Forensics with OSINT: Email Accounts

This article was originally published on the AutomatingOSINT.com blog. I will be the first to tell you that I know little about forensics compared to most law enforcement or private forensic examiners. One thing that I always found amazing was looking at the result of a forensic acquisition and seeing all of that magical data flowing…

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April 22, 2016

By Bellingcat

The Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs Publishes “Their” Evidence of MH17 Fakery

Last week we published correspondence between Bellingcat and the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, in which we requested evidence to support their allegations of Bellingcat and others faking MH17 evidence. The Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs has replied, and their full reply (translated from Russian) with their evidence of fakery is shown below, followed by…

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April 14, 2016

By Bellingcat

Response from the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs to Bellingcat Regarding Fakery Allegations

On April 6th 2016 Foreign Ministry spokesperson Maria Zakharova made the following statement about Bellingcat: Bellingcat as an instrument to divert attention from investigating the tragedy of the Malaysian Boeing over Ukraine We took note of an interview with Bellingcat representatives for the BBC in which they sarcastically spoke about some “trolling” on the part of…

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April 12, 2016

By Justin Seitz

Automated Reverse Image Search Part 2: Vimeo

This article was originally published on the AutomatingOSINT.com blog. In a previous blog post I covered how to utilize the YouTube API to find the preview images for videos and then reverse search them using the TinEye API. In this blog post we will cover how to use the same techniques for Vimeo to retrieve…

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March 29, 2016

By Justin Seitz

When People Sleep: Determine Facebook Activity Using Google Chrome, Javascript and Python

This article was originally published on the AutomatingOSINT.com blog. It is always an interesting question and one that was posed over on the IntelTechniques.com forums. How can you tell what hour of the day people are most active on Facebook? There are tools out there for Twitter and other platforms, but due to Facebook’s limited…

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March 1, 2016

By Justin Seitz

Automatically Finding Weapons in Social Media Images Part 2

This post was originally published on the AutomatingOSINT.com blog. In the first part of this series we examined how to write some code that can slice and dice and image and then submit it to Imagga. By examining the tags that come back we can make a fairly accurate guess as to whether there is…

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February 3, 2016

By Eliot Higgins

“That’s Not a Cluster Bomb” – The Differences Between OFAB 250-270s and RBK-500s

In December 2015 Human Rights Watch and Amnesty International both published reports that included claims that Russia had used cluster munitions in its air campaign in Syria. The Russian Defence Ministry responded to those accusations by denying Russia had them at their airbase in Syria: Concerning the suppositions on cluster bombs. Russian aviation does not…

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January 22, 2016

By Wim Zwijnenburg

Using Citizen Science to Assess Environmental Damage in the Syrian Conflict

  For new and ongoing conflicts across the world, the need to document their impact on civilians and the environment upon which they depend is encouraging the development of new research tools and methodologies. Traditional approaches for monitoring environmental risks are notoriously reliant on field access for experts. But with civilians increasingly able to access…

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