By Danny Citrinowicz
Before the appearance of Social media platforms, terrorist and criminal activities tend, by nature, to be as clandestine and secretive as possible. Accordingly, the methods designed to combat them focus on unearthing data and tying them into evidence of wrongdoing.
One might think that social media platforms – where people cast their preferred persona to the world – are not the places one would intuitively search for terrorists and criminals. Yet in recent years, in light of terrorist organizations’ vast use of social media platforms, the discipline of gathering and analyzing intelligence from social media platforms – developed in the business world and colloquially called SOCMINT – has been increasingly useful in tracking terrorist activities.
This article demonstrates that SOCMINT can be useful in tracing these activities, with the help of WEBINT investigative tools that combine qualitative analysis with Big Data Analytics. Applying these tools can help demonstrate how the activities of Hezbollah, the Lebanese Shi’ite terrorist organization and international criminal syndicate, and its patron Iran, can be tracked online
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