Global progressive policing

Case study: Applying Open-Source Intelligence (OSINT) to combat ULEZ vandalism

OSINT for criminal investigations
Fivecast ULEZ

Fivecast, a leading Open Source Intelligence (OSINT) solution provider, explains how OSINT techniques can help police forces identify coordinated efforts by online groups with the intent to vandalise or disrupt government infrastructure related to the expansion of London’s Ultra Low Emission Zone. By leveraging OSINT, intelligence officials can uncover networks of actors, events and analyse trends indicating criminal behaviours and risks to public safety.

On a recent corruption investigation, our partner organisation said we achieved more in three months than they had been able to in the previous two years because of the sophistication and speed of information collection with Fivecast ONYX. Fivecast gives us a 400% return on our analyst time.
Daryn Liddle, Director, Prevail Partners

Addressing Controversy and Ensuring Public Safety

Recently, the introduction of contentious laws, restrictions or regulations has often ignited public backlash, sometimes leading to criminal activities and disruptions in public order, often shared online. London’s Ultra Low Emission Zone (ULEZ) is an excellent example of this controversy and resulted in widespread vandalism against ULEZ cameras.

According to a recent report by The Telegraph, approximately one in four cameras across the newly expanded zone, has become a target of vandalism, with 159 cameras reported stolen and 351 others damaged. Law enforcement officers have reported numerous offences related to this vandalism. Much of this criminal activity is shared online, making it a matter of concern for investigators seeking to prevent further damage. 

Investigative Challenges

Investigating criminal activities presents challenges due to the sheer volume of publicly available data on the internet. The need to sift through masses of data to identify relevant threats is a daunting and time-consuming task for law enforcement and government agencies. Efficient tools are essential to balance the need to mitigate threats while respecting an individual’s privacy, freedom of speech, and the right to protest, which is crucial as they are legal and fall outside the scope of investigative interest for law enforcement agencies. Ensuring accuracy and avoiding human error when investigating individuals or groups of interest is also crucial when investigating criminal activity online, and an OSINT solution can help mitigate that risk.

Solving Investigative Hurdles

Cover more. Miss Less: Detecting disruptive events and crimes online

Request the case study: 
Detecting disruptive events and crimes online.

To overcome these challenges, Fivecast Tradecraft Advisors utilized Fivecast ONYX, a leading Open Source Intelligence (OSINT) solution, to harness automated data collection capabilities combined with AI-enabled risk detection for efficient data analysis. This approach has accelerated investigations and optimized resources, achieving four times the speed and efficiency of traditional investigative methods, resulting in significant cost savings.

Key Findings:

In this case study, Fivecast ONYX swiftly detected vandalism discussed, promoted, and planned within public social media groups. This content is critical to UK government bodies and law enforcement agencies who are working diligently to investigate further and take action to mitigate the threat.


Request the full case study “Detecting disruptive events and crimes online” and explore the investigation and findings in detail.

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In recent years TikTok has exploded as a leading social media platform, captivating over 3 billion users worldwide with short video and AI-driven content. It’s not only revolutionizing how we consume digital entertainment but has also introduced a new landscape for criminal activity.

Join Fivecast experts on Tuesday 30th April as they examine the variety of nefarious and criminal behaviour playing out on TikTok; equipping law enforcement agencies with tools and strategies to identify and mitigate threats to the community. Register today!

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About Fivecast

Fivecast is enabling a safer world. As a world-leading provider of cutting-edge digital intelligence solutions, Fivecast delivers the world’s most important public and private organizations with the capability to explore masses of digital data, gaining insights critical to protecting our communities. Utilizing leading-edge AI-enabled technology and with the ability to solve the most complex intelligence challenges, there is no other technology that has the capabilities of Fivecast’s solutions.

Visit Fivecast to learn about their innovative solutions and how they are helping law enforcement agencies enhance their investigations.


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