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.
All Hg training classes are approved as continuing professional education credits by ACFE, NASBA, DHS, LPF, SHRM-CP/SHRM-SCP, and ASIS. Individuals will earn continuing professional education credits for attending the live webinar. These webinars are also available for purchase after the live event; however, they are not approved for CEU credits with some associations (specifically NASBA).
All participants will receive handouts on concepts and investigative techniques. Webinars are at 2pm ET unless otherwise stated.
January 23: As an investigator, you have the ability to access hundreds of thousands of Surface, Deep, and Dark web sites to gather the intelligence you need when conducting an investigation. This course provides a thorough description of how and where to find data within public records and open sources.
Participants will learn how to conduct investigations using fee-based public records aggregators and media services and learn how to locate free public records and open sources online. Upon completion of this class, field investigators will be able to
Conduct investigations using public record aggregators such as LexisNexis, CLEAR, Tracers, and Transunion TLO
Be able to identify which aggregator is most applicable for an investigation based on content, interface, cost, customer service, and data relevance
February 21:The ability to uncover information on the Internet is the primary skill of an online investigator. The go-to resource for many is Google, yet not everyone knows how to utilize its full potential. This class expands your general knowledge of the search engine, making difficult searches more effective.
In this intermediate to advanced hands-on class, participants will learn how to maximize Google searches, as we cover the basics, the hacks, and extra Google resources to create proper search strategies and run advanced Internet searches. Participants will also learn the expert tools of this common search application to make difficult searches more effective. Upon completion of the course, field investigators will be able to
Hunt down deep web content
Conduct advanced search strategies on Google, Bing, and other search engines
Use algorithms for surface finds and open source results
March 28: As an investigator, social media platforms and search engines are important tools for tracking down facts and following leads. This class expands your general knowledge of social media platforms and search engines, allowing you to create thorough reports for your clients.
In this intermediate to advanced hands-on class, we will go beyond identifying targets and locating their social media accounts. Participants will learn how to open every aspect of social media to explore where key information can be hidden or overlooked. You will identify which search engine to use, when to use it, and what results you should expect from each by conducting hands-on advanced Internet and social media searches. We will also evaluate and review several free and fee-based resources on the market for locating unique information and monitoring social media. Upon completion of this course, investigators will be able to
Conduct advanced search strategies
Utilize social media search tools
Incorporate free and fee-based alert services and monitoring tools into their investigations
April 23-25: Three days of webinars provide a field investigator the tools to conduct open source intelligence investigations: Learn the types, differences, and jargon of open source investigations; learn how to in-take an online case, understand the parameters of the work, establish goals, and create investigative notes C.Y.A. (Cover Your Analysts!); learn best practices on how to use a computer and the resources available on the Internet and social media; understand when to use the Surface, Deep, or Dark Web to locate your information; understand documentation procedures for creating sharp and understandable reports; and learn the fundamentals of conducting online investigations ethically.
Introduction to Online Investigative Fundamentals and Open Source Primer
May 16: International due diligence is vital for business success and management. It can be a straightforward task, if you know how to utilize the right resources from the plethora of information available. In this course, we will review available databases and open sources for a variety of countries to conduct international due diligence and background checks.
In this intermediate to advanced hands-on course, participants will examine sources for information, including the top foreign corporate databases for researching overseas companies and their principals; explore a list of databases serving foreign countries; and acquire global resources helpful for consolidating multiple country searches. Upon completion of the course, field investigators will be able to
Conduct international due diligence investigations
Navigate and utilize social networks in specific countries
Spot indicators to fraudulent practices and shell companies
June 20: Dark Web sounds like a sexy ‘members only’ club, where socialites get away with advantage and privilege, but in fact it’s a den of inequity operated by the technically sophisticated. Investigators may be sharp at Google and their databases but lack an understanding of what’s going on behind the scenes and how to operate in this nefarious world.
This intermediate to advanced hands-on class will examine the Dark Web, the channels used to institute private sales and exchanges, and criminal behavior. Participants will gain a thorough understanding of the Dark Web—criminality, anonymity, counterfeit products, child pornography, and human trafficking; learn the directory structures of the Dark Web; and learn Dark Web languages like Tor and Tails and the lingo of this underworld. Training will include exploring Dark Web channels for content and finding the resources and specialized search engines for searching against Dark Web content. Upon completion of this course, field investigators will understand how to
Use Tor safely and effectively, while learning the vulnerabilities
Conduct undercover online investigations on the Dark Web
July 11: A good investigator needs search tools that go beyond the generalized Google resource. This course explores new search engine resources and how to properly conduct advanced Internet and social media searches.
This intermediate to advanced hands-on class will improve upon generalized Google searches and learn unique search tools specific to investigative needs. Participants will learn new search engine resources and how to properly conduct advanced Internet and social media searches for people, non-profits, and more. We will also discuss how to track down older online material. Upon completion of the course, field investigators will be able to
Uutilize online monitoring alert services, both free and fee-based
August 19-23: We all start somewhere, and some investigators are still a little lost at understanding what riches and resource of content social media offers. Often leads are created, facts are challenged, and game changing details in support of our cases are a few mouse clicks away.
This introductory primer series will teach you why to use these platforms, how to get into them, where to look, what nuances and leads you need to chase down, and how they are all interrelated. We’ll also discuss how to capture content per service, so you can present it in your reports. Each webinar will cover a singular social media platform and the details specific to them. Platforms to be covered are Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, Instagram and Reddit.
Day 1: Facebook, 50 minutes
This course will examine the history, uses, investigative approaches, subscribing, searching, monitoring, capturing, and reporting, as well as other Facebook nuances.
Day 2: Linked-In, 50 minutes
This course will examine the history, uses, investigative approaches, subscribing, searching, monitoring, capturing, and reporting, as well as other Linked-In nuances.
Day 3: Twitter, 50 minutes
This course will examine the history, uses, investigative approaches, subscribing, searching, monitoring, capturing, and reporting, as well as other Twitter nuances.
Day 4: Instagram, 50 minutes
This course will examine the history, uses, investigative approaches, subscribing, searching, monitoring, capturing, and reporting, as well as other Instagram nuances.
Day 5: Reddit, 50 minutes
This course will examine the history, uses, investigative approaches, subscribing, searching, monitoring, capturing, and reporting, as well as other Reddit nuances.
September 19: Often online investigations require more than a surface exploration of social media accounts. This course explores how to open every aspect of social media to locate key information hidden or overlooked.
Updated quarterly to keep investigators at the fore of social media trends, this advanced hands-on course will explore the latest search tools—free and fee-based—popular for monitoring chatter on social networks from Facebook to Burn Book. Participants will learn how to narrow a large profile to identify assets, evidence, and important details quickly. Software applications that are relevant to search applications will be demonstrated. Upon completion of the course, field investigators will be able to
Locate key information, such as friends and associates, in social media profiles
Understand the objects to be searched in language (native or foreign), imagery (pictures or emoji) and other relevant intelligence markers such as hashtags and live feeds.
November 21: Many social networks and online information sources either allow the subjects of searches to see who has been searching them or provide some obvious clues as to who is looking at their information. This advanced class provides tools for how to work undercover online, while adhering to ethical standards and laws.
In this intermediate to advanced class, participants will receive hands-on training on how to conduct investigations on social media platforms without compromising their online identity, gain tools for working online undercover, and understand how to avoid exposure when researching subjects online. Upon completion of the course, investigators will be able to
Conduct undercover online investigations
Ethically protect their identity while conducting investigations
December 19: As investigators, we are governed by foreign and domestic ethics standards and laws. Yet, everyday an investigator, attorney, or accountant appears in the news for crossing the line using the Internet to research, contact, or connect with their target. They find themselves using technology workarounds, finding holes in the system, or outright hacking to gain information.
This introductory hands-on course offers a comprehensive overview of the legal parameters for conducting online investigations. We will discuss current laws, acceptable practices, and pitfalls that can occur in investigations. Upon completion, field investigators will be able to
Identify drawbacks to taking shortcuts in online investigations
Understand the laws and compliance requirements to stay inline online
Garner the resources for staying abreast of current issues and legal requirements.