As the world of technology changes, the investigative techniques and strategies used by professionals like those at changes as well. We are known for staying on the cutting edge of both technology and investigative methods. And we like it that way.
One of the areas that has grown, and will continue to grow, is the use of social media. Social media engineering is one investigative technique we have become proficient with, especially in our capacity as professionals who find missing persons. We were already renowned for our abilities in how to find missing person, but social media and social media engineering opens a new avenue in investigative work.
Growth of Technology
At , our computer forensic investigators are each a certified computer examiner. Almost 30 years ago as computers became the tool of choice in business and replaced the set of encyclopedias and library research in homes, has been on the forefront of forensic computer analysis so we are known as computer forensics experts.
Then, as the prolific use of cell phones became the norm, was there. Whether cell phone forensics was for mobile phone spyware detection, cell phone hack detection or for forensic data recovery using data mining software, lead the way with one of the first private labs in the nation.
Now you might include social media engineering and investigation as another element in digital forensics, but it actually goes steps further into investigative techniques and becomes an eyewitness. That means that other technology-based strategies are necessary.
When the investigator becomes more than a forensic investigator, a computer forensic expert witness, or the professional providing forensic cellular evidence, additional methodology must be used.
Evolution of social media investigation
Social media engineering and social media investigation changes the investigator into an eyewitness to the information on the computer or cell phone screen. In order to provide proof, the investigator has to preserve the evidence. The social media sites themselves have the “hard evidence,” the actual record, and are unlikely to deliver it to an investigator. However, an investigator has means to capture the evidence real time. Through screen shots and the use of recording devices and narrative, investigators are able to keep the information through images and videos when they are ‘live.” Even if they are later deleted, the evidence is preserved.
We have shared numerous times that files considered deleted on computers and cell phones really are not. But when access to the actual machine where files were created is not possible, investigators can still dig into the truth and provide documented evidence of the facts and therefore, the truth.
Chain of custody procedures and requirements for evidence of this sort is still new and being developed. But you can count on to be there, leading the way, serving clients.
-Brenda McGinley, CEO, All in Investigations, All in Investigations