On Digging Up Dirt

By , October 11, 2012 9:57 am

By Annette K.

By Anna Endter

Book Review: The Cybersleuth’s Guide to the Internet, 12th edition, by Carole A. Levitt and Mark E. Rosch

I like research. You probably do, too. I especially like research that requires some creativity and a fair amount of digging for background information on companies and people (in other words, I really like finding the dirt). My love of investigative research probably stems from spending too much of my childhood pretending my name was Harriet and dreaming of a career with the CIA. Alas, I did not become a spy, but I very much enjoy finding information that elicits a “you found this?!” kind of response. The Cybersleuth’s Guide to the Internet by Carole A. Levitt and Mark E. Rosch should get at least some of the credit for providing a good starting place for planning out a public records or other complicated online search for background information.

Now in its 12th edition, The Cybersleuth’s Guide is packed with useful tips and tricks for online research and investigation, including:

  • Advanced searching with Google
  • Suggestions and strategies for using meta-search engines
  • Social media research
  • Locating expert witnesses and verifying credentials

I found the information about searching for physical addresses, email addresses, blogs, message boards and social networking to be especially interesting (and illuminating, frankly, when I tested out various tools using my own name). The Cybersleuth’s Guide is also a good resource for strategies for approaching public records research and narrowing down the kind of information you might need to find. It’s a great resource for any librarian who does competitive-intelligence and public records-type research.

The book can be purchased here:.

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