DIGITAL FORENSICS – A DIFFERENT BALL GAME!
Forensic Science as a neat scientific discipline and an utility to the Criminal Justice system to give finality to evidence based on well established canons of scientific testing, analysis and report is a fact all investigators and investigation agencies are well versed with. Renowned books liken Modi’s – A Textbook on Medical Jurisprudence and Toxicology are the repositories of ultimate truth and so have been our scientist practitioners. It was a well established order.
The world changed with the onset of the digital revolution and over a short period of time all human interactions, communication, office work, money transfers, organised crime, trafficking of all types, terrorism and the like moved onto to the cyber world or had a huge component of it. Communication, documents and its storage grew in its complexity and location became a thing of the past. The culprit and the owner of evidence of the crime could be two different entities, not even a human being you could look for.
The forensic scientist and investigator had to learn the state of art IT skills to remain abreast with his investigation. The MNCs started to get their control over all cyber forensic tools, business being the only consideration. These tools did not bother about jurisdiction in the very same manner as the technology it was trying to unravel. The output churned out is machine created, human intervention was termed tampering. The scientist had to follow the machine and the investigator followed the scientist and in many cases technician.
The growth of techno-investigators did not happen. Nobody took the lead to establish this new field on a solid footing. From single computer based investigation to severs and now cloud, there is no end to it. The initial areas have got a bit consolidated but emerging ones are throwing the investigations out of gear. Anti-forensics is turning out to be an insurmountable challenge followed by cloud computing, pace of technology change, malicious software, encryption, steganography and piracy enhancing technologies have taken the wind out of sails.
FOR A ROBUST CRIMINAL JUSTICE SYSTEM, DIGITAL FORENSICS HAS TO STAND ON ITS OWN FEET.