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Cell Phone Evidence Data Extraction and Documentation – Get Crucial Data

Published By Raj Kumar
Anuraag Singh
Approved By Anuraag Singh
Published On April 10th, 2017
Reading Time 4 Minutes Reading
Category Mobile Phone

Cell Phone Forensics Is the Base of Forensics

In this information era, each and every byte of critical data really matters a lot. Cell phones, being the devices that can store a huge wealth of personal data and information, work as the base of forensics nowadays. The data crucial for forensic investigations gets stored in people’s cell phones sometimes intentionally, and also sometimes, in an unintentional way. This thing is valid for all sorts of mobile phones including iPhone too.

cell phone forensics

Mobile forensic examiners usually have expertise in forensic data retrieval from these phone devices in a way, which helps in preserving the extracted evidence under the conditions that are truly forensically acceptable, so as to ensure that the extracted info is admissible in court.

Each & Every Byte of Phone Data Matters!

Some data types, which are retrieved even after they had been deleted, and then that data examined while any mobile phones forensic investigations, consist of the following types:

cell phone data extraction

  • Calls time; dialed calls & received calls, along with their call duration
  • Contact information (names and numbers)
  • Text messages
  • Photos
  • Videos
  • Graphics
  • Entries in the Address Book (including residential address & email address of address book entries)

Challenges For Forensic Teams During Cell Phone Evidence Data Extraction

  • Many phones being examined over a period of time with the help of multiple tools & techniques makes it tough for the examiners to recall all the information of those cell phones.
  • There are numerous types of cell phones in the market today, with different OS and different file systems, as well as applications, varied services, and various peripherals; making it all an onus task for forensic examiners
  • Cell phones today are designed in a way that they can communicate with phone networks as well as other networks through infrared, Bluetooth, & WiFi. For preserving data, it is mandatory to isolate that particular cell phone from all of its surrounding networks, which is not possible in all cases.
  • Though the data saved in phone might be small compared to that stored in computers, but with each passing day, storage capacities of these mobile devices is increasing.
  • Mobile devices have various internal along with removable storage capacities as well as use online data storage capability too. In many of the cases, it becomes mandatory for the investigators to apply multiple tools for extracting the required phone data; which sometimes results in report conflicts and erroneous info.
  • Mobiles phones are evolving constantly and so is their data type. With increasing popularity of Smartphones, documenting only some specific data types seems insufficient. Only the phonebook entries, calling logs and history, text messages, pictures, calendars, notes etc does not suffice. Data is ever-growing and so is the installed apps, which all has to be documented too as such apps too have huge data and information including passwords, GPS location & browsing history too.

Reasons for Data Extraction from Cell Phones

cell phone evidence extraction

  • Cell phones data plays a very crucial role in forensic investigations
  • Mobile phone data is more often than not needed for intelligence purpose

Evidence Collection Phase

data extraction from cell phones

This phase involves the procedures using which the examiners request for making the examination. All this is handled in this info-intake phase. Evidence that they intake is mostly done through entailing request forms and other paperwork for documenting the phone custody chain, ownership info, and the type of incidents in which that particular cell phone had been involved in; all this is culminated with outlining of this general info about the type of data that the intelligence requester has been seeking to extract or document from that cell phone.

Phase of Examination

  • Developing specific examination objectives
  • Documenting examination goals

Phase of Identification

  • Examining the cell phone
  • Identifying the goals of that particular examination
  • Noting the make, the model & the identifying information for the cell phone
  • External as well as removable data storage as well

Some More Potential Evidence Sources

  • Intake of information
  • Identification of that information
  • Preparation for investigation
  • Isolation
  • Processing of data retrieved
  • Verification of that data
  • Archiving
  • Presentation of collated information
  • Documentation and Reporting

Solution by Experts

If you want to get crucial data without any data lost, So first thing you need to call the efficient commercial Mobile forensic team for data extraction process to extract all evidence like photos, recordings etc from your device.