Timely Tips for the OSINT Pro

Our weekly hack for those in the field doing the work & digging up critical intel.

The ability to uncover information on the internet is the primary skill of an online investigator. There are hundreds of thousands of surface, deep, and dark websites, but which are most pertinent to your unique case? Do you know how to utilize Google to its full potential?  With new social media platforms coming online at a rapid pace, capturing leads and evidence in social media networks is more complex than ever. Do you know the latest tools of the trade?

Hg’s OSINT Tips of the week provides you with the latest intel how to be most effective in our tradecraft. We are always looking for new tools, so don’t hesitate to let us know if you  have one you’d like reviewed in a future post!


This week, we provide a valuable list for international due diligence OSINT investigations.

Corporations Canada: ic.gc.ca/app/scr/cc/CorporationsCanada/fdrlCrpSrch.html

Should you be investigating a federally incorporated company in Canada, visit the Government of Canada search page. Searches can be performed on a corporate name, a corporation number, or a business number, plus other search parameters. A lag time may be involved, if the corporation has recently completed a transaction with Corporations Canada. The database excludes financial, insurance, or loan corporations, and trust companies. Further results denote the directors, corporate filings, corporate name history, and addresses.

Alibaba: alibaba.com

Alibaba launched in 1999 and is the leading platform for global wholesale trade. Based out of China, this website contains millions of products ranging from electronics to machinery to apparel. The Amazon of China, individuals can search for an item they need and are given a list of available options being sold by various companies at a range of prices. While the products may appear to be cheaper than you would find from an American-based vendor, the products are not always as they appear, according to a disclaimer on the website. Alibaba can be a useful website to check, when investigating for counterfeit or stolen goods.

Nifty: business.nifty.com

Nifty provides business and company information for entities located in Japan. In order to navigate the website, you will need to translate it into the preferred language. In the left-hand corner choose “Company/Credit Information.” A search of the company name will provide you with research reports by specialized research companies such as Teikoku Databank, Tokyo Chamber of Commerce Research, Risk Monster, and Tokyo Economy. A result will show you the street address of the business. To get full details on the company, the report can be purchased through Nifty. Additionally, the website contains human resource/person information and copies of newspapers and magazines.

Have an OSINT tip for us? Contact us, and we will consider reviewing it in future posts! 

Like what you’re reading? Check out Hg’s monthly webinars!

Throughout the year, Hetherington Group offers monthly live webinars on current investigative tactics involving social networks, search engines, due diligence, the dark web, and other related topics. Participants should have some basic experience of the topic, as all programs are offered at an intermediate level, unless otherwise noted.

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