Our Exposing the Invisible guides feature topics, methods, tactics and tools that you and others can adapt and use to investigate and collaborate in your own context.

About the Guides

We develop guides and other self-learning resources about methods, tools and good practices of online and offline investigation. Here you will find a series of guides developed by the Exposing the Invisible (ETI) team as well as by our expert contributors - all based on practical experiences and tested techniques.

We also feature a selection of guides and resources form partner organisations and other reputable sources.

We invite you to explore these guides and to reach out to us with feedback and suggestions of any other great investigation resources you encounter.


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Investigating Visual Media Conflict and Power Verification Video

Struck by a Drone, Verified by Humans: Methods for geolocating a Russian drone strike in Ukraine

This is a case-based guide detailing our methodology to verify a Russian drone strike allegedly...
Investigating Visual Media Image Research Metadata Verification

More than Meets the Eye: Geolocating Images Using Creativity and SunCalc

Geolocation means finding the real world location of an object, such as the place where a...
photo of the Exposing the Invisible - The Kit's cover
Access to information Safety Verification Data Mapping Metadata Research

Exposing the Invisible - The Kit

The Kit is a collaborative, self-learning resource that makes investigative techniques and tools...
Access to information Money and Politics Safety Research

Investigate - The Manual

Launched by the Civil Forum for Asset Recovery (CiFAR) in June 2021, "Investigate - The Manual"...
illustration of a man in a suit and hands handing over bundles of money
Access to information Money and Politics Research

Follow the Money: A digital guide for tracking corruption

Investigative reporter Paul Radu reveals his methods of tracking corruption and organised crime...
cartoon character sending a letter with the help of a pigeon
Safety Access to information

Quick Guide to Alternatives

When you use a tool, your data land ups with the company that owns that tool. The only way to...
cartoon octopus
Money and Politics Research

The Heretic's Guide to Global Finance

Brett Scott, publisher of Heretic's Guide to Global Finance, describes his work as a "friendly...
geometric shapes on a red background
Access to information Conflict and Power Research

The Info-Activism How-To Guide

A comprehensive tool by Tactical Tech to teach activists the basics of evidence-based activism.
photo of a bird in flight holding a stalk in its beak
Money and Politics Conflict and Power Research

FAIR Legal Guide for Investigative Journalism

Based on English law and written by British lawyer Korieh Duodu, the guide aims at helping...
terminal with disturbed red circle on a black background
Access to information Investigating Visual Media Data Research

Unlocking Data from PDFs

A deep dive on scraping and parsing, reverse engineering a digital document to make the data in...
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Access to information Safety

Me & My Shadow

A Tactical Tech website that allows you to trace your “digital shadow” - all the data you...
photo of three printed books - Visualising Information for Advocacy
Access to information Money and Politics Safety Data journalism Investigative Art

Visualising Information for Advocacy: The Book

Tactical Tech's free online book about how advocates and activists use visual elements in their...
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Access to information Safety

Security in-a-box

Tactical Tech resources that show you how to remain anonymous online, how to protect your data...
drawing of the document of the territorial cadastre and buildings

Maps for Advocacy: A set of Tactical Tech tools

Created by Tactical Tech in 2008 and updated in 2010, the booklet demystifies the step-by-step...
drawing of an adult man with a knife attacking a child
Safety Research

Dealing with Trauma

A list of helpful resources addressed to civil society members facing stress, threat and trauma...
people sitting over a common desktop
Data Data journalism Verification

School of Data: A series of tutorials on working with data

A project by the Open Knowledge Foundation teaching you all you need to know about dealing with...
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Access to information Safety Research

Domain Games: Role-playing an online identity

Guide featuring a step-by-step approach to setting up a new website when privacy is a significant...
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Investigating Visual Media Metadata Data Research Verification

Behind the Data: Investigating metadata

A guide that looks at how metadata has been used to expose, protect and verify abuses and...
drawn patterned graphics
Safety Access to information Research

Mobile Phone Security

Resources you can use to learn about phone security.
photo of the savannah from a bird's eye view
Investigating Visual Media Mapping Satellite Imagery

Starting Satellite Investigations

In 2006, a group of Bahraini activists used Google Earth to view palaces and land owned by the...
detail of Drone Survival Guide with black and white filter
Research Investigative Art

Drone Survival Guide

A playful art project to inform citizens about the dangers and capabilities of drones worldwide.
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Investigating Visual Media Investigative Art

DIY Drone Shadows

A handbook, in which author James Briddle gives guidance on how to draw a drone shadow, including...
cartoon floppy disk

ONO Robot's Guide to Staying Safe on the Internet

A Tactical Tech series of short animations featuring the character ONO, a friendly robot whose...
botanical illustration of a pomegranate
Access to information Data Research

Scraping Web Data

This guide presents a series of steps that can be used to automate the collection of online HTML...
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Scraping Web Data - Sample table

A sample table related to the "Scraping web data" guide, to help organise the way you index...
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Scraper Bremen

Scraper for information about CCTV cameras in Bremen
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Hacker News Spider

Copy and paste the "spider" code below into a new file, such as `` and run...

Scraper for Refugee Resources in Berlin

Copy and paste the "spider" code below into a new file, such as `` and run it...
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Scraping Web Data - Spider template

Copy and paste the "spider" code below into a new file, such as ``. Edit the...
Access to information Research

Smart Searching with GoogleDorking

Using search engines to their full capacity to expose the unfindable.
illustration of two onions

OpenVPN over Tor (VoT)

A step-by-step guide to configure OpenVPN with Tor browser using Terminal.
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Access to information Metadata Research Data

Digital Resources for Citizen Investigators: Our recommendations

Many of us currently live and work in a challenging physical isolation imposed on us by the...
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Safety Access to information Research

Leak and Onion Soup

A guide about using Tor ("the onion router") to read, verify and process leaked data, which might...
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Access to information Investigating Visual Media Data Verification

Decoding Data

A selections of topics, approaches and ideas for those who are thinking of getting better at...
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Access to information Verification Metadata Research Data

Verification Handbook

A guide to verifying digital content and navigating today's (dis)information environment.
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Mapping Satellite Imagery Research

Geojournalism Toolkit

The Geojournalism Toolkit was born when a group of environmental journalists felt a new approach...
drawing of a man in a balaclava drying money on a clothesline
Money and Politics Access to information

An Idiot's Guide to Money Laundering

A tongue-in-cheek "Idiot's Guide to Money Laundering" created by Global Witness, an organisation...
GPS metadata
Investigating Visual Media Research Verification Metadata

Digging into digital images: Extracting batch location data automatically

A how-to guide covering the basic steps for using open-source metadata extraction software on...
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Who, what, why, where? Verification of online data

Misinformation can spread at a feverish pace and in this chapter we will address the essential...
botanical drawing of onion

VPN Over Tor

Using VPN over Tor for a secure anonymous connection to the internet
webbrowser searching https://whois?
Access to information Metadata Research

Who is WHOIS?

To lookup where domain names are registered you can use a database that stores the information of...