Online Strategies - Onsite training to help people use the Internet more efficiently and effectively.



Recent Books
by Ran Hock:

The Extreme Searcher's Internet Handbook - 4th Edition ! (2013)

The Traveler's Web (2007)

Training for:

Utilization of the Internet for OSINT
Internet Tools and Resources
for Open Source Intelligence - OSINT

Online Strategies provides training in using open sources, particularly the Internet, for effective and efficient information collection for OSINT (Open Source Intelligence) applications.

Online Strategies' OSINT seminars are presented at the customer's site and have been given to a variety of governmental agencies and ministries of three countries, and also to companies, associations, and conferences.

Course content is tailored to the specific customer and the length of courses can range from one to three days.

Seminars usually consist of a combination of the following modules:

Overview of OSINT on the Open Web

Some Key Intelligence "Starting Points"
Internet resource guides for intel professionals

Web Searching Strategies
Frameworks for structuring searches and strategies

 Evaluating the Quality of What You Find on the Internet
Traditional evaluation criteria and techniques extended into the Web context     

Site Investigation Tools
Tools useful for determining the authenticity, origin, and validity of individual websites and their content

Web Searching Tools - Web Search Engines

A detailed examination of features, techniques, and tools available in the major search engines, including Boolean, field searching, and a variety of special features such as language tools, “web definitions”, “shortcuts”, etc

Visualization and Clustering Search Tools

What these tools are and the unique search perspectives and results they provide

The Deep Web (Invisible Web, Hidden Web) 
Why the majority of pages actually available on the Web may not be found by search engines and how that problem can be solved

Resource Guides and Portals
Specialized subject guides to Web content – a way of gaining some immediate Web “expertise” in any subject area

News Resources - The Epitome of "Open Source"
How to easily locate, access, and search newspapers, news networks, blogs, and other news resources.

RSS Feeds
Having news, blogs, and other information automatically delivered to you.

  Accompanying materials provided
  for each attendee:

  • Spiral bound booklet (approximately 160 pp.) for use as notes during the session and as a resource guide afterward

               Example of booklet provided for attendees

  • Webpage containing links for all websites covered in the session. (Example) This is available to attendees both during and after the session.

  • Laminated Quick Guide to Google.
    Laminated Quick Guide to Google. Laminated Quick Guide to Google.

Using automatic alerting services provided by search engines, plus an examination of programs that can immediately alert users to changes in any public webpage.

Discussion Groups (News Groups, Forums, etc.)
How to identify and access this immense body of material and easily find the hidden jewels of valuable information.

Searching for People
Techniques and resources for finding information on individuals.

Searching Social Networking Sites
A brief look at searching major sites such as Twitter, Facebook,LinkedIn, etc.

Image Searching
Finding images using image search engines and other resources such as Flickr.

Finding radio stations, podcasts, speeches, etc.

Searching for video using major search engines and other resources such as YouTube.

Languages and the Internet
The variety, power, capabilities, and limitations of translation and other language tools available on the Internet

A brief look at the issue of searcher anonymity, its implications, and tools that are available to address the problem

Selected Topical/Geographic OSINT Sources on the Web
This is a brief sampling of resources available for selected regions, countries, and special topics.

For a sampling of the kinds of websites typically covered, see

The Instructor:

Randolph Hock, Ph.D.

For the last sixteen years Ran Hock has been creating and presenting courses on using the Internet effectively for research.  Over his career he has trained over 15,000 online users in thirteen countries, including presenting OSINT courses for intelligence agencies of three countries and courses for major international organizations. Ran is the author of eight books on using the Internet and is a frequent contributor and columnist for professional publications.
Ran has held management and training positions with DIALOG and Knight-Ridder Information Services, and has been a reference librarian at MIT and the University of Pennsylvania. In addition to his training and writing activities, from 2007-2010 he served as an adjunct faculty member for the Johns Hopkins University Masters Degree Program in Intelligence Analysis (Division of Public Safety Leadership) and currently serves as adjunct faculty for at The Catholic University of America where he teaches the course, "Actionable Intelligence: Information Analysis and Communication". 

Ran is active in the American Society for Information Science and Technology for which he has served on the Board of Directors, and chaired committees and chapters, and is also a member of the International Association for Intelligence Education. Ran's biography has appeared in Who's Who in America and he is a recipient of OSS.NET's OSINT Platinum Candle Award



To inquire about courses, call 855-244-0400 (from within the U.S.) or 001.410.224.0400 (from outside the U.S.) or email Ran at

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