What is OSINT?

OSINT is an acronym for Open Source Intelligence.



The UK National Police Chief's Council (NPCC) has defined OSINT as, "publicly available information (ie, any member of the public could lawfully obtain the information by request or observation). It includes books, newspapers, journals, TV and radio broadcasts, newswires, internet www and newsgroups, mapping, imagery, photographs, commercial subscription databases and grey literature (conference proceedings and institute reports)".

The US Department of Defense and the Director of National Intelligence both define OSINT as, "produced from publicly available information that is collected, exploited, and disseminated in a timely manner to an appropriate audience for the purpose of addressing a specific intelligence requirement."



www.uk-osint.net hundreds of links to on-line and publicly available information.



In 2017, Detective Chief Inspector Peter Lloyd (retired) explained how policing techniques moved away from collecting traditional “Open Source” information to a new “Internet Investigations and Intelligence” capability, with the skills to match the digital age.

III might continue to gain traction as an alternative name for OSINT.


Internet Investigations

People that do not have an 'intelligence' or other law enforcement background, might use the term "Internet investigation".