Basic - OSINT - M03 - Gathering data from YouTube

This post is a part of the OSINT series.

1. Why would you want to use YouTube in OSINT?

YouTybe is the most popular platform for sharing videos online today. What could be interesting is that Google has acquired YouTube in 2006 for about 1,65 bilion dollars (cash and stocks). Every researcher should noticed that this service is very valueable for doing some reconnaissance, it allows to view videos from all over the world, content here is usually released faster then in television and mainly with geolocation data included.

Here are some YouTube big numbers from official YouTube Press Room:

YouTube also provides a YouTube API which can be very usefull for data mining and gathering interesting information about video content. In this article we are going to use Python-YouTube-Samples written in Python language.

2. How to use YouTube in OSINT?

2.1 Search for video with keywords.

How to run this code:

python movie_keywords.py --q test --max-results 10

Parameters:

--q - Query to search

--max-results - Number of results to return

Output:

Output printed in console

Comment:

The above script will let you search YouTube for a specific phrase and get the movie results.

2.2 Search for video with keywords and geolocation.

How to run this code:

python geolocation_keywords.py --q test --location "52.23,21.01" --location-radius 5km --max-results 10

Parameters:

--q - Query to search

--location - Coordinates of the place

--location-radius - Radius

--max-results - Number of results to return

Output:

Output printed in console

Comment:

The above script will let you search YouTube for specific content like: movies, playlists etc which was uploaded at the specified location.

3. Next steps

The aim of this article was to show and present the possibilities of using YouTube as a source of data, I described why YouTube can be so important in OSINT and how to gathenring data from it.

Please remember that this is just an introduction and covers only data gathering, you should realize that this is just a first step into OSINT world, in next we should know how to analyze collected data and how to get information from such data. These steps I would like to describe in Advanced OSINT series, so please leave the comment below if you are interested in such series of articles.

4. Additional information

The source code attached to this article is available on GitHub.

To start working with YouTube API you will need register your app and gain a developer key, you can do this at Google Developer Console.

Posted with : OSINT

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