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Thus, a Mobile Forensics examiner has to use different tools and techniques to address this issue. Mobile device forensics is a field to obtain digital evidence from mobile devices for an investigation. Types of evidence found on mobile devices are not only limited to memory, SIM, or SD card, but it also includes all the smartphone evidence such as cloud storage, browser history, and geo location. The evidence is stored in internal memory, flash memory or external memory devices, such as SIM and SD cards, call history, and details may be obtained from service providers.

There is a procedure to complete mobile device forensic activity. These processes are as follows:. The mobile device is taken as it is from the site. If the examiner allows it to be connected to a network or the internet, then there is a chance the evidence from memory may be overwritten.

To avoid this, the seizure is done in Faraday cage or a bag where the mobile device cannot make any connection to a network. It is highly recommended for an examiner to get the device in Airplane Mode at the time of seizure. After the acquisition of a mobile device, a hash value is generated to maintain the integrity of evidence.

Digital Forensics for Handheld Devices

This hash value is important in analysis and examination part when these processes are done on the acquisition; the image is likely to be tampered. Therefore, the hash value is used to determine whether the data from the mobile acquisition is manipulated or not. Mobile cloud computing is the combination of mobile networks and cloud computing allowing user applications and data to be stored in the cloud i. This data may be stored in geographically diverse locations. Email: info cpaiii.

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Contact us cpa referral Questions. The area of digital forensics has grown rapidly, mainly due to the increased trend in mobile devices. The increased usage of small scale digital devices like cellular phones has led to the development of mobile device analysis. Drawing from relevant literature from current research and mobile forensic practitioners.

To provide initial context throughout this briefing it is important to first understand the best practices for handling mobile evidences stated by the Association of Police Officers ACPO Good Practices Guidelines for Digital Evidence:. Secure and take control of the area containing the equipment. Do not allow others to interact with the equipment;.

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Photograph the device in situ, or note where it was found, and record the status of the device and any on-screen information;. If the device is switched on, power it off. It is important to isolate the device from receiving signals from a network to avoid changes being made to the data it contains. For example, it is possible to wipe certain devices remotely and powering the device off will prevent this. Seize cables, chargers, packaging, manuals, phone bills etc.

Be aware that some mobile phone handsets may have automatic housekeeping functions, which clear data after a number of days. Submit items for examination as soon as possible. Association of Chief Police Officers, Any recommendation within this briefing will ultimately be made with these procedures in mind. For any Police Officer PO or Forensic Investigator, mobile devices contain a plethora of potential evidence, each with their own method of handling. Given the wide range of mobile devices we may encounter within an investigation, each with individual functionality, its advisable to first have a clear understanding of the potential evidence the device may contain.

Seizing mobile evidence. When dealing with digital evidence certain procedures need to be implemented that may differ to evidence of a non-digital crime. Mobile devices present a unique challenge for first responders due to the sheer amount of devices that could be used within a crime. In section 2. Following this we will discuss the recommendations for seizing and handling this evidence. Upon seizing evidence traditional methods of forensics are often considered first.


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Fingerprint and DNA evidence may be on a device that could link and offender to evidence acquired. However it is important to consider that some methods of collecting fingerprints may damage a device.


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  8. If a device is incorrectly handled, contamination may occur, thus the authenticity of the evidence may be questioned. This poses a significant issue for investigators as it can be lost completely when a device is switched off or loses battery. Data stored within the RAM of a device is often of great importance as it may contain a very up-to-date record of recent activity. Thus this may prove vital within an investigation and should be handled efficiently and effectively.

    First responders may also find mobile devices in a compromised state, methods may be actioned by an offender such as the submersion of a device in liquid. Its important to understand that whilst a device may have physical damage, this does not completely prevent the extraction of data.

    It should also be considered when handling evidence that any unopened emails, text messages or incoming phone calls should not be actioned till analysed by the forensics unit as this may compromise the authenticity. As a final note, other methods for the destruction of data can be caused via remote access tools. Seizing and handling at the scene.

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    First and foremost it is recommended that any issues encountered during the seizer of evidence should be recorded, as this may aid the investigation. A record of interactions and actions taken with digital evidence must be recorded, as well as individuals that evidence has been in contact with, in order to comply with Principle 3 of the ACPO guidelines, which state;.

    Principle 3: An audit trail or other record of all processes applied to digital evidence should be created and preserved.