Evidentiary Implications of Potential Security Weaknesses in Forensic Software

Evidentiary Implications of Potential Security Weaknesses in Forensic Software

Chris K. Ridder (Stanford University, USA)
Copyright: © 2009 |Pages: 12
DOI: 10.4018/jdcf.2009070105
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Abstract

Computer forensic software is used by lawyers and law enforcement to collect and preserve data in a “forensic image” so that it can be analyzed without changing the original media, and to preserve the chain of custody of the evidence. To the extent there are vulnerabilities in this software, an attacker may be able to hide or alter the data available to a forensic analyst, causing courts to render judgments based on inaccurate or incomplete evidence. There are a number of legal doctrines designed to ensure that evidence presented to courts is authentic, accurate and reliable, but thus far courts have not applied them with the possibility of security weaknesses in forensic software in mind. This article examines how courts may react to such claims, and recommends strategies that attorneys and courts can use to ensure that electronic evidence presented in court is both admissible and fair to litigants.

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