Authentic8 Debuts Open Source Intelligence Academy for Researchers, Analysts

Justin Cleveland

Justin Cleveland, Authentic8

Authentic8 launched April 29 the Open Source Intelligence Academy, a new secure and remote integrated suite of resources and tools to augment training from home and remote work environments.

The suite is made available exclusively to Authentic8 customers and is delivered within Silo, Authentic8’s web isolation platform. It’s designed to educate and improve the efficacy of internet-focused research teams, get new analysts up to speed, streamline intelligence cycles and provide new, current skills for experienced researchers.

Developed in partnership with training specialist OSINT Combine, the curriculum has more than 40 training modules to build and test analysts’ skillsets. It includes the OSINT Insider talk webcast series, the OSINT Forum for collaboration, analysis case studies, demonstration videos and OSINT Tradecraft Training.

The service is applicable to any research team in public and private sectors using the web to collect intelligence data from publicly available sources —from investigating financial crimes to cyberthreats or illicit activity.

Many organizations hiring OSINT professionals haven’t previously had the opportunity to invest in their teams through secure online courses, according to Authentic8. In a 2020 survey conducted by Cybersecurity Insiders, 85% of professionals conducting OSINT have received little or no training.

“As a virtual, globally distributed browser environment, Silo for Research provides an appropriately configured, secure and audited platform for researchers of all types to conduct their mission,” said Justin Cleveland, head of sales at Authentic8. “We noticed that many of our customers don’t have the resources or capabilities to train, assess, and certify analysts as they come into the workforce. That’s why Authentic8 developed OSINT Academy.”

The curriculum content starts with OSINT basics and fundamentals, and takes analysts to advanced tradecraft and continuously updates content to keep analysts up to date. It has collections on regional, industry, group or individual targets, and teaches analysts how to use mining and analytics tools and how to collect on the Dark Web.

“The Open, Deep and Dark Web are an ever-changing landscape, and as such, internet research is a dynamic process,” said Nick Espinoza, head of special services at Authentic8. “We designed OSINT Academy to be similarly fluid, not static. We’ve approached the challenge of improving analyst skills and overall approach to a problem set as a continuous process, not a one-time change.”

Chris Poulter, founder and CEO of OSINT Combine, said his organization is thrilled to work with Authentic8 to deliver this computer-based training through the Silo platform.

“Drawing on our combined, in-depth expertise, we were able to craft content that meets the training and certification requirements of tens of thousands of open source analysts around the world,” he added.

The OSINT Academy is available now for existing licensed users of Silo for Research.

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