Tag Archives: digital forensics

Look Sharp – Reality of Forensic Image Enhancement

cctv-enhance-example The proliferation of CCTV systems and exponential growth in the use of mobile recording devices such as smartphones and tablets, has meant that police and other law enforcement agencies now look increasingly to audiovisual evidence when conducting their investigations. Indeed, one of the most common requests we receive as forensic audiovisual specialists is to enhance CCTV and video footage to reveal more detail in the image. Technology has advanced at a very fast pace to the point where modern digital CCTV systems can record high quality video for long periods of time. This has facilitated the enhancement of imagery evidence and in many cases has helped to prove the identification of suspects, vehicles and other items of interest. Unfortunately the popularity of films and television programmes like 24, CSI and Spooks, which showcase technology in the investigative process, has led to unrealistic expectations about how much ‘magic’ we can really perform.

This may not be the world of Jack Bauer and friends, but we can still bring our own brand of wizardry to your audiovisual evidence.

The starting point is to understand that the potential for enhancement depends crucially on the quality of the recorded image. Image quality produced by CCTV systems is influenced by several factors, including camera capability, recording resolution of the CCTV system, and to what extent the images are compressed when being stored on the digital video recorder.

Read the full article at Police Oracle (free registration required).  

New Australian Federal Police Forensics Centre At Majura Hit By Delays

Federal police employees will have to wait until next year to move into a multimillion-dollar forensics lab in Canberra after construction delays pushed back the completion date. Continue reading New Australian Federal Police Forensics Centre At Majura Hit By Delays

Opinion: Calling for Standards and Code of Ethics to Govern Digital Forensics

Those involved with determining the relevance of digital evidence are sometimes ill-equipped to make such assessments.

Let me begin with a disclaimer: I am neither a digital forensics practitioner nor do I play one on television.

I am, however, a professor in, and former chair of, an academic department at a research university that houses a graduate program in computer (digital) forensics I helped design. In 2011, I co-founded a computer forensics research center at my university. Finally, for more than 10 years, I have taught undergraduate and graduate courses on professional ethics for criminal justice and digital forensics students.

These experiences helped me to identify a glaring issue in the field of digital forensics: a lack of professional and ethical standards governing practitioners. And as digital forensics gains prominence in the legal landscape, the lack of agreed-upon standards is a big problem.

What is digital forensics?

Digital or computer forensics involves the identification, recovery, analysis and presentation in court of relevant information taken from electronic devices such as computers and cellphones.

That information becomes digital evidence presented in court and designed to tie together people and events in time and space to establish causality for crimes or civil wrongs.

For example, imagine the police arrested a suspect on charges she murdered her husband by poisoning him. The police will seize and examine the suspect’s computer to uncover incriminating evidence such as the suspect’s history of visiting web pages that deal with poisons. Once retrieved, the prosecutor will likely introduce that evidence to gain a conviction.

Digital evidence is not trivial. If it leads to a conviction on criminal charges, the defendant may face prison time. In a civil case, it can lead to a defendant having to pay monetary damages. And the police officers, technicians and private contractors who testify in court about digital evidence can be the difference between justice served and justice denied.

Read more at Time.