Author: Pete Steege

Pete Steege

SSDs can destroy fragile digital evidence

Two researchers from Australia have found that solid state drives (SSDs) can make digital evidence unusable.  Turns out these devices have a mind of their own, and can accidentally destroy the chain of evidence without being told to do so.

Digital evidence is inherently fragile. Conscious care must be taken to successfully get it to trial. This is a challenge for those collecting suspicious content, but also effects evidence it as it makes its way through an investigation on the way to the courthouse.

Optical discs are used to distribute criminal evidence because they don’t “break” fragile evidence.  They are passive media on which chains of evidence can readily be preserved, and they are readable by a wide variety of devices.

No surprise that automated disc ingestion and publishing systems are increasingly being deployed in law enforcement – especially in child pornography cases.  These systems can ingest and “triage” stacks of evidence discs, and also be used to deliver evidence safely to trial.

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