4 Tools for Online Investigations – Internet Investigation Tools


– Today we’re talking about
the four tools you can use to do your own online investigations. Stick with us. (bubbly instrumental music) This is Tim Santoni, and
welcome to Risk Mitigation TV. On this show, we wanna
help you mitigate risk in your business and
protect you from those in your inner circle. Today we’re talking about
four tools you can use to conduct your own online investigations and avoid detection when
you’re looking at competitors and researching
infringement, counterfeiting and a variety of other things. Stick with us. The four tools we’re gonna look at today are DomainTools.com, the paid version, specifically looking at Whois records and how those are useful;
secondly, the Tor Browser, which allows you to
anonymously surf the web, avoid detection from people
identifying who you are and where you are; we’re gonna also look at the Wayback Machine or archive.org affectionately referred to
as the Internet Time Machine; and lastly, we’re gonna
look at an open source intelligence research tool that lets you look at Facebook photos
that have disappeared from your subject’s profile
but may appear elsewhere. Stick with us. So the first tool that I wanna talk about is the Whois lookup from DomainTools. And I’m talking about the
paid version of DomainTools, which is a small access
fee on a monthly basis or a yearly subscription fee. The reason I like this is
because it allows you to look at current as well as archived information. Let me start off by explaining exactly what a Whois record is. A Whois record is the ownership
record for a domain name. It’s like the property
and title information for real estate, tracking
who’s owned and transferred domain names over a period of time. And I find there’s some
really great useful pieces of information within the Whois record that I wanna highlight. So once you log into
DomainTools, you have access to a lot of great data. First off, creation date, expiration date and update information
specifically on the domain name that you’re looking at profiling, which is great information. Next, if the domain name ownership
record is not privatized, the Whois record is not privatized, the email address visible will show how many other domain names are registered or associated with this email address. And then you can conduct
reverse lookups based on that by clicking right here. Additionally, within the Whois record, contact information about
who controls, manages all of the domain name
information for a client. This right here is the
registration for Slack.com. You can tell it has a company name. This can be very useful
when you’re looking to profile a company,
determining who actually owns the domain name and other
information about the company right here in the Whois record,
as well as phone numbers, fax numbers, email addresses
and other information on the company and people who may have registered the domain. Another great useful piece of information is the archived information. This right here is the Whois
record for wheelsup.com. As you can see currently, or as of 2010, this domain name was privatized. However, if you look back
to 2001 and you look at this record here, you can
see that it was registered to Wheels Up! Travel
in Plant City, Florida; and there’s a contact person
with an email address. So if you’re trying to acquire
or learn more information about this domain name,
reaching out to this individual may help you to determine
if he currently owns it and if he in fact sold or
transferred to somebody else. So this is a little bit
about DomainTools.com and the Whois lookup tool,
which is very valuable if you’re doing online investigations. The next tool that I wanna
talk a little bit about is the Tor Browser. This is a free download, works
on Windows, Mac or Linux. And what this is, is a tool that will, in essence,
give you anonymous browsing on the Internet. And what it does is it
bounces your communications off of a variety of
different volunteer networks all over the country, and this keeps your location information and
identifiers anonymous to websites that are tracking users and information in real time. So this is really useful if
you’re doing undercover buys of infringing goods or
counterfeit goods online. It’s also really important if
you’re researching competitors and you don’t want them aware
that you’re on their site. Again, this is a free
download, Tor Browser. I will warn you that because
of the way the communications are bounced from location to location, that the typical speed that
you would get are degraded. So you’re gonna spend
a little bit more time but you will be anonymous. So check this out. The next tool I wanna
talk about is archive.org, affectionately referred
to as the Wayback Machine. This is the archived records of websites all over the Internet,
assuming these were not Flash-generated pages
and they were crawled. Wayback Machine is like
your Internet time machine and it’s gonna give you
archived information about websites that you’re
looking to research. What’s great is this gives
you timeline of years and frequency of updates,
as well as a calendar that you can actually
click on and figure out what the snapshot looked like
at that given point in time. Additionally, you can take
a look at product lines and descriptions of information
at a given point in time and navigate on those pages, assuming that they were cached. This is a cached page of wheelsup.com from February of 1999 and it
gives you information about what they were up to at that time, phone numbers they would have used, any kind of advertising slogans. This is a great place to check first when you’re looking at
trademark infringement, trademark use and selling of
products and services online. Again, this is the Wayback Machine. You can find it at archive.org. I encourage you to check it out. The last tool or resource that
I’m gonna go over with you has to do with open-source intelligence, which is just a vague way of saying ways to collect publicly available sources in an intelligence context. In this situation, we’re
gonna look for information and pictures and video and content that may or may not be
available on someone’s profile but could lead us,
include some information as to where they’ve been
and what they were up to and profiling them a little bit further. So we’re gonna be using
a tool called Qwarie, which is an open-source free tool. But first off, we need to
locate the Facebook profile we wanna profile. So we’re looking here at Bill Smith. I don’t know a Bill Smith. So what we’re gonna do here, take the link to his homepage profile here
and you’re gonna copy that and you’re gonna copy it into Lookup-ID. Every Facebook profile has a
unique ID or serial number, which you need to develop in
order to conduct the search. So we’re gonna do that look up here and it’s gonna generate this code. We’re gonna take that code
and we’re gonna copy it and we’re gonna paste it into
the Qwarie Facebook tool. Now if we scroll down here,
you’ll see there’s a variety of things we can search
for: photos of our subject, videos of our subject, places liked, and this includes images and information that are on his profile or on anyone who he’s connected with or
has posted or linked him up. So let’s just do a search
here, insert his information and there we go. All these pictures. This could include
pictures posted by friends, relatives, anywhere he is tagged, and these photos are not in his profile but appear on this search,
which is a great way to obtain information
intelligence about your subject. People commenting about
your subject, where they are with your subject, what
activities they’re up for. This is great in asset
research, locating individuals, family law, domestic
disputes, custody disputes. Great, great tool to get
what some would refer to as deleted photos or
information off of Facebook that could lead you to
great, great information in your research of a subject. So again, first you’re going to develop that Facebook homepage link. You’re gonna generate the Facebook ID and then you’re gonna go
over here to the Qwarie tool, you’re gonna click on Facebook
and you come down here and search of variety of things. It’s also great at linking
two accounts together where you can look at putting
in two different Facebook IDs and see what posts and information where they show up linked together. Again I encourage you
to check out this tool. It’s a great way to uncover
open-source intelligence, specifically on Facebook. Thank you very much for
tuning in to the show. If you like what you see,
please give us a thumbs up. Please subscribe for
videos just like this. We put out a new video
just about every week. Thank you so much and we look
forward to connecting with you in the comments. (beep) And lastly, we’re gonna talk about… (beep) We’re also gonna look at
archive.org. (mumbles)

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