Law enforcement agencies, forensic consulting firms and human resources departments are among CBL’s forensic service clients. CBL provides them with the services and expertise required to safely collect evidence from hard drives and computer systems and the forensic analysis capabilities of storage media in search of deleted, hidden or maliciously or accidentally damaged data.
Evidence garnered from computer storage devices can be as critical to the successful prosecution of a case as any other physical evidence. With the burgeoning “white collar” criminal activity dependent on computer technology, CBL’s forensic expertise assists our clients in gathering evidence that may otherwise be overlooked, undiscovered or contaminated.
CBL’s Computer Forensics practice utilizes experts skilled in ensuring that all digital data has been handled within the legal principles of security, continuity and accountability. The integrity of CBL’s procedures and processes will withstand the challenges presented in a court of law.
CBL’s entry into computer forensics required a sophisticated level of understanding of today’s requirements for law enforcement and legal procedures. To this end, CBL has retained the expertise of leading practitioners in these fields. Detective Superintendent Larry Edgar and Elliot Berlin, L.L.B., were instrumental in ensuring the forensic practices developed by CBL met the highest standards required under court-required rules of evidence and legal procedures.
Data Forensics and Computer Evidence Collection Process
One of the key elements in every data forensics procedure is time. Users may unintentionally or inadvertently modify or overwrite evidence simply by continuing to complete their daily tasks. CBL can quickly collect and preserve data or evidence that may have been deleted or become inaccessible through normal computing methods. CBL can determine if certain information exists and, if so, where it might be located.
When the data storage media is received at the CBL facility, an accurate audit trail commences. The media is immediately logged into a tracking system and a logbook is produced. This logbook, suitable for all legal proceedings, accompanies the media through all steps. Any CBL employee who handles the media ensures the continuity of evidence by adding their name, signature, date and a detailed description of what was done.
At this stage of the process, CBL’s expertise in magnetic media storage devices begins to play a crucial role. First the media is replicated exactly on a sector-by-sector basis ensuring the integrity of the subject media and evidence is preserved. CBL works only with the replicated copy ensuring that no contamination of the original data takes place. In this preliminary examination, CBL provides the client with a report detailing the file structures, integrity and recoverability of deleted files. This report may be used to determine if the files present will be of assistance in the investigation. CBL will make recommendations at this point on how to proceed if further information needs to be retrieved. This report allows our clients to make an informed decision on the various options that may be available to them.
The objective of adhering to this rigorous process is to provide our forensic clients with the following results, which may be required in a court of law:
Exhibiting evidence specifying the facts that will support a conclusion or judgment
A forensic report stating how the media was treated and how the forensic testing was performed
A report log providing a detailed audit trail of the media.
A standardized process which allows for the replication of findings should a challenging group feel it is necessary to dispute the results.