Social Media Investigations
Thursday, January 25 - Friday, January 26, 2024
8:00 am - 5:00 pm


This Training is for Active Police, Probation, Corrections, Agents, and Analyst Only

Virtual Training 2 Day/$250

COURSE DESCRIPTION:  In today’s ever changing digital world, Facebook, Instagram and Snapchat are utilized by a statistical majority of U.S. teenagers and young adults 29 and younger.

Social media is becoming frequently utilized for narcotics sales and trafficking, firearms sales, gang recruitment, and to prey on minors by predators looking to exploit them, or sell them dangerous narcotics such as Fentanyl. Encrypted communication applications such as Telegram and Signal are increasingly popular with individuals using social media for criminal activity. Social media evidence is useful in many types of investigations, from patrol level cases to complex investigations of sexual assaults or homicides, but it’s not always easy for investigators to identify suspect accounts, obtain legal process, interpret / analyze the data, use it to further an investigation, and ultimately testify to it.

This course is intended for law enforcement officers with an interest or a need for experience and training in social media investigations. This course is relevant to street crimes team members, and investigators / detectives working in assignments related to narcotics, firearms, gangs, sex crimes, property crime, robbery and homicide.

This course is not just an open-source online investigations course like many other social media courses for law enforcement. This course will focus on current trends, writing legal process to social media platforms, analyzing data obtained from legal process, using that data to build investigations, report writing and testifying on social media evidence. The class will include discussions on case law, undercover accounts, policies and procedures, and more. Students completing this two day workshop will leave more than prepared to work more complicated social media investigations, and utilize social media to investigate and solve cases.

This course is being offered as a 2 day virtual course and workshop. Although this course is virtual, it will be interactive. Students will engage with the instructor through interactive lecture, polls, question and answer sessions, case studies, live demonstrations of social media investigations, and more.

The following subject matter will be covered:

  • Current Trends related to Narcotics & Firearms Trafficking on Social Media
  • Software available for social media investigations
  • Snapchat Investigations (Appx 5 Hours)
    • How Snapchat Works
    • Identifying Suspect / Target Snapchat Accounts
    • Legal Process: Search Warrants, Pen Registers, Wire Taps & More
    • Deciphering Snapchat Search Warrant Data
    • Snapchat’s Location Data
    • Using Pen Registers to Locate Fugitives
    • Report Writing & Testifying on Snapchat
    • Developing UC Snapchat Accounts
  • Facebook & Instagram Investigations – Meta Platforms (Appx 5 Hours)
    • How Facebook Works
    • How Instagram Works
    • Legal Process: Search Warrants, Pen Registers, Wire Taps & More
    • Deciphering Meta Platforms Search Warrant Data
    • Report Writing & Testifying on Meta Platforms Data
    • Developing UC Facebook & Instagram Accounts
  • Other Social Media Applications of Significance
    • Telegram & Signal Investigations
    • Encrypted Messaging Applications
    • Text Messaging Applications
  • P2P Applications – 21st Century Money Laundering
    • Current Trends with Criminal Profiteering / Money Laundering
    • Legal Process to P2P Applications (CashApp, Venmo, Zelle)
    • Asset Forfeiture / Seizures from P2P Applications
  • Undercover / Investigative Social Media Accounts
    • Proactive cases involving UC Social Media
    • Mistakes NOT to Make
    • Properly Handling / Managing UC Accounts within policy, procedure & law
    • Relevant Case Law
    • Report Writing & Testifying on Undercover Social Media Cases
  • Case Studies of Successful Social Media Investigations

INSTRUCTOR:  Tim Gooler has worked for a northern bay area law enforcement agency since 2015, and is currently assigned as Detective with the Property Crimes Investigations Team, tasked with investigating firearms manufacturing, trafficking, and a multitude of property crimes offenses. Det. Gooler was recognized in 2022 as the Peace Officer of the Year for the county he works in, the Detective of the Year for his agency, and in 2019 recognized as the California Robbery Investigator’s Association Officer of the Year.

Det. Gooler has authored dozens of search warrants and pen registers for cell phones, technology providers and social media providers. Det. Gooler has conducted dozens of Snapchat investigations involving search warrants and pen register / trap trace orders, which have resulted in arrests for firearms trafficking, narcotics sales, child exploitation crimes, child abuse, gang crimes and property crimes, and the seizure of numerous firearms and sales quantities of narcotics.

In addition to Tradecraft Training, Det. Gooler instructs courses in social media investigations for Northern California HIDTA, Central Valley HIDTA, CNOA, and the Robert Presley Institute of Criminal Investigation (ICI) Narcotics Course offered by the Fresno City College.

HANDOUTS:  Please click here  prior to the start of the class to access class handouts and other useful documents.  

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Cancellation Policy:

  • If Tradecraft Training cancels the course the full amount of tuition will be refunded or the tuition can be credited to a future course.
  • If the student/agency cancels prior to 48-hours before the course, the full amount of tuition will be refunded. 
  • If the student/agency cancels less than 48-hours prior to the course the tuition is NON-REFUNDABLE, however a substitute student may attend in the students place.
  • If the student "NO SHOWS" the course tuition is NON-REFUNDABLE.  
  • In lieu of cancellation you may transfer your registration to another person without penalty. Cancellations must be made in writing by email to

Payments via Check:
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Tradecraft Training LLC
46 Traynor Street # 7
Hayward, CA 94544

Cost per person: $250

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