Source Code—why should you look at it?

Source Code—why should you look at it?
2019-10-25 Sara Ekberg

Source Code—why should you look at it?

For many investigators, websites and webpages serve as a vital source of information—whether you’re an investigator for a governmental institution, an investigative journalist, a private investigator or an academic researcher.

Historically, viewing sites and pages in a browser, as they were intended to be viewed, has adequately provided the information most investigators need. However, today we understand that there’s a lot more to the picture than what meets the eye. When viewed through a browser, HTML is designed to provide a seamless user experience with easy to follow text, pictures, and hyperlinks, while leaving out difficult programming, commands, and conversions. In other words, behind the user-friendly interface is a whole pile of code! 

In this brief guide, we will look at a few examples to demonstrate what kinds of valuable information might be lurking behind the HTML of sites and webpages, and explore some techniques and options for retrieving it. Uncovering such data can provide you with added insights or context, and help you learn something about the page, post or source that you were previously unaware of.

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