Cyber profiling: Predicting political orientation with SOCMINT

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Yu, Sz De

Yu, Sz De. (2023). Cyber profiling: Predicting political orientation with SOCMINT. Telematics and Informatics Reports, v.10, art. no. 100058.


Cyber profiling is an analytical technique that utilizes a person's online presence and digital footprints to create a better understanding on this person. This study used SOCMINT as the digital footprints to test cyber profiling. SOCMINT stands for social media intelligence, which is composed of a set of computer forensic techniques used for intelligence gathering on social media platforms. This study used open source SOCMINT to perform cyber profiling with the purpose to predict political orientation. While research has suggested it is feasible to infer a person's political orientation, such research was mostly done with the help of artificial intelligence algorithms, which relied on a large dataset. However, in the application to criminal justice, SOCMINT often needs to be based on individualized rather than aggregate data. Research in this area is scant. This study therefore was intended to test whether SOCMINT profiling can still be accurate in the absence of big data. The results were promising as even if SOCMINT was collected from limited sources it may still generate an accurate profile. This study adopted mixed methods, including qualitative and quantitative components.

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Open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY-NC-ND 4.0).