Live Universal Awareness Map displays events related to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine |
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Live Universal Awareness Map displays events related to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine

Open-source intelligence from Ukraine

In the Russian war against Ukraine, open-source intelligence has been used to understand its progress. The Live Universal Awareness Map ‘Liveuamap’ is an interactive map-based news and information site dedicated to reporting on conflicts, human rights issues, protests, terrorism, weapons deployment, health matters and natural disasters.

The map identifies events related to, amongst others, Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. It relies on social media, using embedded geotags to determine location. This data is collected by ‘AI web crawlers’, which filter relevant stories that are forwarded to a group of expert analysts for fact-checking. Hired editors determine which facts and stories should be displayed on the map in near real-time to minimise spam.

The map for Ukraine displays information ranging from destroyed infrastructure, armoured vehicles sightings, connectivity loss, shelling, aerial threats, and movement of materials. It also shares official announcements, including on liberation of territories.

The Liveuamap is useful as a curation of available materials that has been helpfully visualised on a map that includes a timeline. This helps to get a better understanding of the situation in Ukraine as it quickly highlights incidents reported on social media, and its mapping and geotagging are helpful references. The Liveuamap allows users to quickly find the information most relevant to them and provides open online access to a complete chronological archive of the site’s information, enabling users to research past events and historical trends.

Curious to learn more about open-source intelligence? Read our data story on open-source intelligence and related challenges.

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