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OSINT Tool Review

Extracting media types from websites

DownThemAll: Media extraction tool DownThemAll: Media extraction tool https://www.downthemall.net/

DownThemAll is a browser Add-On that I have put to good use during several Digital Investigations. Initially, the Add-On was exclusive for Mozilla Firefox, but is now available for Google Chrome and Opera, which is good (depending on your browser of choice of course!). I personally prefer using Mozilla Firefox due to the range of effective Add-Ons that can be used for OSINT purposes. DownThemAll is a bulk media downloader that lets you download all content from a website in a few clicks. Unlike other bulk media downloaders, it is configured so that it can parse through images which are contained within linked pages. For example, not too long ago, I led with an investigation of several old Geocities (yes, Geocities!) webpages that had been archived on the WayBackMachine. HTML markups which were dreadfully common in the late 1990s and early 2000’s included embedding single images on a separate HTML page – adding to the complexity, the images were also wrapped within an tag which redirected on itself. Using DownThemAll – especially on archived Geocities pages – was very effective and enabled me to extract batches of images from target pages.

When using DownThemAll on a target webpage, the Add-On will also provide some meta data including ‘Title’ and ‘Description’ assigned to the image. The tool also has a simplified and advanced filtering capability, allowing the investigator to select Images, Videos or other media through the use of Regular Expressions.

DownThemAll is particularly effective for Digital Investigations that requires bulk media to be collected – this is especially the case when dealing with cases concerning offensive or illegal material. However, the main drawback to this tool is that it is not effective on popular social media platforms including Facebook, Instagram and VKontakte. However, in upcoming reviews, we will look at media collection tools that can be easily deployed on target social media profiles.

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