Authentic8 announced the immediate availability of a new secure, remote training suite on April 29. The OSINT Academy is an integrated suite of resources and tools available exclusively to Authentic8 customers to augment their training securely from home and other remote work environments. It is delivered within Silo, Authentic8’s web isolation platform, and designed to educate and improve the efficacy of internet-focused research teams.
OSINT Academy provides access to a wide array of resources designed to get new analysts up to speed, streamlining their intelligence cycle and enabling new skills for experienced researchers who wish to stay current. The curriculum was developed in partnership with training specialist OSINT Combine to create more than 40 targeted training modules, with video, presentation, study-guide, and interactive quiz materials designed to build and test analyst skill sets.
OSINT Academy includes the OSINT Insider talk webcast series, the OSINT Forum for collaboration and peer-to-peer exchange, analysis case studies, demonstration videos, and OSINT Tradecraft Training, a robust computer-based training platform.
The new service aims to address critical training deficits in a field increasingly essential for safety and security in public and private sectors. Whether investigating financial crimes, cyber threats, illicit activity, or other security threats, research teams turn to the web to collect intelligence data from publicly available sources.
Many organizations hiring OSINT professionals have not previously had the opportunity to invest in their teams through secure online courses. According to a 2020 survey conducted by Cybersecurity Insiders, 85% of professionals conducting OSINT have received little or no training. Stakes are high for this community, where a tradecraft mis-step can result in attribution, revealing an investigation, or exposure to counter threats.
Justin Cleveland, Head of Sales at Authentic8, said the company noticed that many of its customers did not have the resources or capabilities to train, assess, and certify analysts as they come into the workforce. So the OSINT Academy was born.
Curriculum content takes the analyst from OSINT basics to advanced tradecraft, starting with a learning overview and fundamentals. It branches into collections on regional, industry, group, or individual targets. Analysts will learn to use mining and analytics tools, how to collect on the Dark Web, insight into cryptocurrencies, and more. Content will be continuously updated to keep analysts on top of the latest trends.
“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. By integrating learning resources into the analyst’s Silo account, we can continue to engage and keep informative content in front of users on an ongoing basis on the single pane of glass they use for research.”
Authentic8 points out that measuring the capabilities of research teams is important to functional leaders, and trainers and administrators benefit from OSINT Academy as well. Through an integrated reporting system, decision-makers can monitor student progression through coursework, review quiz scores, and measure student engagement in published resources.
The OSINT Academy is available now for currently licensed users of Silo for Research (Toolbox).