Best Open Source Intelligence (OSINT) Tools in 2023

The acronym “OSINT” refers to Open Source Intelligence software, which are programs used to gather data from open sources. OSINT tools are mainly used to gather intelligence on a target, whether a person or a company.

Some of the most common OSINT tools are listed below (in no particular order):

Maltego 

Maltego is a flexible open-source intelligence platform that may shorten and speed up inquiries. To facilitate more precise research, it gives you access to 58 data sources, allows you to manually add data, and houses databases with as many as 1 million entities. Its robust visualization features also allow you to choose from various formats, such as block, hierarchical, or circular graphs, and add weights and annotations for even more nuanced analysis.

Trust and safety teams, law enforcement, and cybersecurity specialists may all benefit from Maltego’s ability to provide investigative findings and easy-to-understand insights with a single click.

Intel 471

Intel 471 is a free and open-source OSINT reconnaissance tool that may collect and examine various information, such as IP addresses, CIDR ranges, domains and subdomains, ASNs, email addresses, phone numbers, names and usernames, and even Bitcoin addresses.

Intel 471 has over 200 modules that can carry out the most extensive operations and reveal crucial facts about any target. It offers both a command-line interface and an embedded web server equipped with a user-friendly GUI interface, both available on GitHub.

You may use it to see whether any security holes exist in your company due to exposed data. As a whole, it’s a formidable cyber intelligence tool with the ability to reveal previously unknown information about potentially hazardous internet organizations.

OSINT Framework

The Open Source Intelligence (OSINT) Framework is an excellent tool. It is more convenient than independently investigating every application and tool available since it contains everything from data sources to useful connections to successful tools.

This list isn’t limited to Linux; it also has alternatives for other OSes, making it a universal resource. In fact, having such well-organized resources is more beneficial than ever before; the only difficulty is devising an efficient search technique that narrows down results like car registration or email addresses. The Open Source Intelligence (OSINT) Framework is becoming a go-to tool for gathering intelligence and organizing data.

SEON

Using a person’s social media and other online accounts to prove their identification is becoming more widespread in today’s digital economy. To verify digital identities, SEON has taken the lead.

Your company may have access to over 50 social signals that combine to form a thorough risk assessment using its email and phone number systems. Not only do these signals verify a customer’s email address or phone number, but they also glean additional information about the customer’s online behavior.

In addition to its ease of use and accessibility, SEON allows organizations to implement queries directly, via an API, or even through a Google Chrome plugin.

Lampyre

Lampyre is OSINT-focused premium software that helps with things like due diligence, cyber threat intelligence, criminal investigation, and financial analytics in an effective way. You may install it on your computer with a single click or use it in your browser.

Lampyre can automatically analyze 100+ frequently updated data sources beginning with a single data point, such as a firm registration number, complete name, or phone number.

You may use either a downloadable program for your computer or an application programming interface (API) to get the information. Lampyre’s SaaS product offering, Lighthouse, enables customers to pay per API call for a complete platform to monitor risks and analyze threats.

Google – Free OSINT (If You Know How to Use It)

Free and effective OSINT tools include Google search engines and others like Bing and DuckDuckGo. Of course, that’s assuming you have some familiarity with sophisticated filtering techniques. This means honing your search such that the most relevant results are returned using the most advanced indexing algorithms.

Skilled sleuths have figured out how to “reverse-engineer” search engines throughout the years. Google Dorking (also known as Google hacking) uses special search operators or functions to greatly increase the effectiveness of Google’s resources (it works with search engines beyond Google, too).

Recon-ng

In its inception, Recon-ng was released as open-source and free software for analyzing website domains’ infrastructure. It has grown into a comprehensive framework since its inception and is now available as a command-line interface for Kali Linux and a web application.

Its primary purpose is the same as that of Metasploitable, another penetration testing software program, and the two programs have a striking resemblance in their user interfaces. It has many useful tools, such as port scanning, DNS search, and GeoIP lookup.

Recon-ng is one of the more sophisticated tools on our list. Still, a wealth of material is available online to help you learn how to use it to uncover sensitive files like robots.txt, discover hidden subdomains, detect SQL issues, and discover a business’s content management system (CMS) and WHOIS.

Spokeo – Check US Citizen Records

Spokeo has a user-friendly design, and preliminary testing indicates that its findings are more reliable. Spokeo’s versatility extends to its usage as a reverse email search, reverse phone lookup, and reverse address lookup tool.

The billions of documents available include property deeds, judicial records, and even history records and social networks. The service can be used online, and there is also an Android app for doing searches. The main drawback is that it mostly focuses on the United States, so you may need to try another resource if you’re seeking someone in a different country.

PhoneInfoga

You’d be hard-pressed to find a better open-source program for OSINT for phone number lookups, albeit it does need a fair amount of technical know-how to utilize. The technology is universal and can extract as much data as possible from a phone number in any country.

In contrast to SEON’s service, however, you cannot do a reverse social media search to discover which networks a person has signed up for using a certain phone number.

Email Hippo

Email Hippo has been around since 2009; it is accessible through VerifyEmailAddress.io. Despite this, it has lately undergone significant changes and is no longer available to the public. Data enrichment for investigations, marketing, and fraud protection are just some of the use cases catered to by the solution’s division into CORE, MORE, ASSESS, and WHOIS.

Unfortunately, the product’s positioning has dramatically shifted, making it harder to understand. The free trial lasts only 14 days and doesn’t need a credit card, but that’s plenty of time to decide whether it’s right for you.

Shodan

Shodan is a sophisticated search engine that provides instant visibility into a company’s IT infrastructure. By entering a company’s name, users may get a categorized list of their IoT devices, organized by network or IP address, along with information about their whereabouts, configuration settings, and any security holes.

Shodan’s cutting-edge software toolsets also allow for in-depth research of the OS, open ports, web server type, and design language utilized by a company’s employees.

Aircrack-ng

Professionals in the field of information security utilize Aircrack-ng, a robust and comprehensive security penetration testing tool, to check the security of wireless networks. Frame capture, WEP IV collection, and access point location tracking through GPS are just some of the monitoring data that can be gathered with this program.

If you want to know what weaknesses a wireless network has before you try to attack it, Aircrack-ng is a must-have tool. Moreover, it can undertake token injection attacks, fake access point assaults, and replay attacks to assess network security and examine performance. Ultimately, it can break WEP and WPA PSK passwords (WPA 1 and 2).

Its adaptability to many operating systems, including Windows, OS X, and FreeBSD, is a primary strength of this application, which was originally designed for Linux. Moreover, its command line interface (CLI) capabilities provide additional flexibility. This allows more experienced users to quickly and simply build scripts to further customize the tool to meet their specific needs.

BuiltWith

BuiltWith is an impressively powerful website detective that exposes the technology stack, frameworks, plugins, and other details behind famous websites. It’s a good resource for anybody considering using comparable technology on their websites.

BuiltWith also includes a list of JavaScript and CSS libraries that a website may be employed, giving you even more specific information on the structure of those websites. So, BuiltWith is helpful for informal research and conducting reconnaissance on behalf of enterprises or organizations seeking to learn the inner workings of various websites. Combine BuiltWith with a website security scanner like WPScan, which is designed to find the most frequent vulnerabilities affecting a website for maximum protection.

Metagoofil

Metagoofil is a free, open-source program on GitHub that may extract information from many public documents, such as PDFs, Word documents, PowerPoint presentations, and Excel spreadsheets. It’s a strong search engine, so it can find all sorts of helpful information, including which users have access to which public papers and their true identities, as well as the server that stores those documents and how to get there.

Wayback Machine

When you use the Wayback Machine, you may access a digital archive of the internet and the world wide web. It is maintained to take periodic screenshots of web pages and save them for further reference. It does a spidery thing over the web, visiting different sites and taking screenshots so that the web may be archived for posterity. A webpage snapshot may be added to the archive for future reference.

In addition to being completely free, using the Wayback Machine is a breeze. Around 699 billion web pages have been archived by this open-source intelligence-gathering technology. Using the given timeline, calendar, and time stamps, you may search based on a certain date by entering the URL of the desired website. This is a screenshot of the MakeUseOf homepage from April 6, 2007.

Spyse

Spyse is the “largest thorough internet assets registry” for cyber security analysts. Spyse is a data collection tool several organizations use, including Open Web Application Security Project (OWASP), IntelligenceX, and Intel 471. The Spyse engine then examines this information to identify potential security threats and establish relationships between the organizations involved.

Nonetheless, paying subscriptions may be necessary for developers who want to create applications that use the Sypse API (despite the availability of a free plan).

Haveibeenpwned

Troy Hunt’s Have I Been Pwned is a service that allows users to see whether their personal information, such as email addresses and phone numbers, has been exposed online due to a hacking incident. To check whether your username, password, or phone number has been hacked, all you have to do is enter that information into the website’s search box.

Intelligence X

Intelligence X is the first-of-its-kind archiving service and search engine of its type, preserving archived copies of web pages and complete leaked data sets that would otherwise be erased off the web for reasons of objectionable content or legal grounds. Although this may seem like the work of the Internet Archive’s Wayback Machine, there are important variations in the kind of material that Intelligence X aims to archive. Intelligence X will archive any data set, no matter how contentious it may be.

DarkSearch.io

Some dark web users may be aware of the best places to hunt for certain information, but for others who are just getting started, DarkSearch.io may be a helpful resource. DarkSearch, like another dark web search engine called Ahmia, is free and has an API for doing automated searches.


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Prathamesh Ingle is a Mechanical Engineer and works as a Data Analyst. He is also an AI practitioner and certified Data Scientist with an interest in applications of AI. He is enthusiastic about exploring new technologies and advancements with their real-life applications