Today’s media is a constant hurricane of negativity so it is nice to hear a hacking related story with a positive message. Tracelabs are a non-profit organisation using crowdsourcing to find missing family members by extracting publicly available digital evidence. They hold both real life events at conventions such as Defcon where they incorporate a score system for information ranging from email addresses to photos to give a competitive spin on the project. This encourages participants to take part and the race-like atmosphere has been successful on multiple occasions. “Capture the flag” style games have been a staple of the hacking community for a while now, however the information being extracted is usually set up before hand to avoid legal issues. Tracelabs have found a way to incorporate the game not only into a real life scenario, but one that will benefit people who are at their lowest. They also provide a centralised online hub for people searching for the missing people to add their own finding and provide help to others. As well as all of the above, they also provide open source intelligence training to both the authorities and the public. With people from both inside and outside the hacking community realising the benefits exploitation tools can present when used for ethical reasons, could this be the start of a cyber forensic revolution?

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