Social Media Intelligence: Foundations (Virtual Course)

Open enrolment and in-house options available

Our Social Media Intelligence: Foundations course is the perfect entry point for researchers and investigators wishing to make effective use of existing and emerging social media platforms. The course begins with guidance on the legal and ethical conduct of social media investigations. We go on to explore the more immediate sources of information such as Twitter and Telegram, and the platforms commonly used by online communities and interest groups. From there we explore the many sources of video content before ending with guidance on the Alt-Web and the many platforms popular with fringe and extremist groups.

There are currently no dates planned for this course. Register your interest for future dates or enquire about in-house options.

Course Outline

Working with the Blogosphere

Getting Started

  • Building your sock puppet
  • OPSEC essentials for SOCMINT investigations
  • The Search-Monitor-Investigate (SMI) Model
  • Prepping your browser
  • Building and maintaining your SOCMINT toolkit

Keywords and Search Strategies

  • Social media search strategies
  • Indexing keyword and search phrases
  • Indexing hashtags
  • Working with emojis

Working with Blogs

  • Blog discovery: tools and strategies
  • Working with blog platforms
  • Monitoring a blog's content
  • Mapping a blogger’s online footprint
  • Validating bloggers and their content

Working with Twitter

Searching and Monitoring Twitter

  • Finding Twitter users
  • Finding issue-specific content
  • Searching Twitter: syntax and strategies
  • Monitoring Twitter profiles

Investigating Twitter

  • Generating user stats and analytics
  • Investigating Twitter profiles
  • Investigating profile interactions
  • Investigating friends and followers
  • Investigating conversations and threads
  • Capturing and saving Twitter content

Working with Messaging Apps

Working with Telegram

  • Finding and searching Telegram groups
  • Finding and searching Telegram channels
  • Monitoring Telegram channels
  • Capturing and labelling content
  • Investigating Telegram profiles

Working with Discord

  • Finding and searching Discord channels
  • Monitoring Discord channels
  • Capturing and labelling content
  • Investigating Discord profiles

Working with Forums

  • Working with forums and discussion boards
  • Working with chan sites and image boards
  • Working with Reddit and its alternatives
  • Independent social media platforms
  • Finding interest-based communities
  • Scraping and monitoring forum data

Working with Video Content

Video Sharing Platforms

  • Video search strategies and resources
  • Working with video hosting platforms
  • Monitoring video platforms, channels and users
  • Investigating video content and metadata
  • Geolocating video content
  • Verifying and validating video content
  • Downloading and saving video content

Working with TikTok

  • Finding TikTok users and their content
  • Investigating profiles and their followers
  • Investigating and analysing a profile's reach
  • Monitoring TikTok channels and content

Working with the Alt-Web

Alt-Tech and the Alt-Web

  • Introduction to the Alt-Web
  • Finding alternative social media platforms
  • Tracking themes, memes and conversations
  • Investigating users profiles
  • Understanding influence and reach
  • Capturing and labelling content
  • Monitoring alt-web platforms
There are currently no dates planned for this course. Register your interest for future dates or enquire about in-house options.

Course Details


This course is intended for researchers, investigators and intelligence professionals of all backgrounds, regardless of prior work experience.


On completion of this course you will have the ability to:

  • Leverage popular social media platforms for research and investigative purposes
  • Track and monitor issues of interest across a range of messaging apps and social media channels
  • Leverage emerging social media platforms catering to niche interests and extremist ideologies
  • Conduct social media investigations in a legal and ethical manner


  • A full set of course slides and user guides
  • Templates to support requirements planning and data collation
  • Tip sheets and cheat sheets
  • Recommended SOCMINT tools / services as bookmarks
  • Recommended readings to support further study
  • A certificate of completion


EUR 1,200


No prior knowledge of social media intelligence is needed to take this course.


Please observe the following requirements:

  • You will need a Windows or Mac laptop (tablet computers are not recommended)
  • Install Google Chrome. You will be required to install a range of browser extensions, so it is important that you have administrative rights to your laptop
  • Install Zoom
  • Set up a Google account to facilitate the use of different tools
  • A second monitor is recommended but not essential

Additional software requirements will be sent prior to the start of the course.