We Are Bellingcat: Global Crime, Online Sleuths, and the Bold Future of News

Book review by Deane Barker tags: spies, tech, military

Bellingcat is a “open source intelligence” cooperative. It’s a group of people who surf the internet to find evidence of crimes.

They made their name during the Syrian conflict. They would scour uploaded videos and compare them to Google Maps to find where they were taken. In doing so, they were reporting troop positions more accurately than the media.

They did the same during the investigation of two Russian expatriates who were poisoned. They managed to amass a ridiculous amount of evidence that the Russian FSB tried to kill them in a state-sponsored assassination.

Same thing with the shootdown of a Malaysian airlines flight. They tracked the missile launch vehicle all the way from Russia into Ukraine, then tracked it on the way out, minus one missile.

This the story of the history of Bellingcat. How the group got their start. It goes deep into their major investigations, and will leave in amazement at the amount of information that’s completely available from open sources, all you have to do is review it all and put the pieces together.

Compelling reading, and an amazing organization and effort.

Book Info

Eliot Higgins

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