Current Challenges in Digital Forensics Investigations

MailXaminer | April 1st, 2020 | Forensics

Nowadays, technology is growing rapidly and the rate of frauds associated with the technology is increasing immensely. However, digital forensics investigators use to face more complicated challenges in digital forensic evidence finding. There are many automated  tools that may help the investigators to find the evidence. But still, there also exist current challenges in digital forensic investigations. The answer to withstand the various challenges faced by a forensic evidence examiner is explained in detail through this blog.

Challenges Faced in Digital Forensics Investigation

Digital Forensics is the process of finding the evidence through analyzing the suspected documents. Moreover, the gathered artefact can be used for the proceedings in the court of law. Current challenges in digital forensic investigations process includes different stages such as identification, investigation, validation, recovery, etc. from digital storage media in finding the evidence.

During the analysis of data files,investigators can also use some third-party trustworthy tools i.e. MailXaminer. It is the best software used by various organizations to analyze the data in depth that may help find the potential evidence. It is incorporated with several features such as Search Mechanism, Data Analytics, Keyword Search, etc. that can help in investigation to find more reliable evidences.

Note: To know the detailed procedure for digital evidence collection in cyber security, you can check other blogs on Mailxamier.

Some Current Challenges in Digital Forensics Investigation

 The different challenges faced in digital forensics while conducting the investigation process includes the following issues such as:

  • Data Breach
  • Encryption
  • Steganography
  • DoS (Denial of Service)
  • IoT Threats
  • Blockchain Revolution
  • Ransomware
  • Cloud-Based

Now, we will discuss these problems in detail.

Let’s have a look!

DATA BREACH

The primary intention of the attacker is to steal and damage the data. After this incident, data recovery becomes the main issue and it is required to recover all the data. Data loss is a very common thing that can be done intentionally/unintentionally and it becomes a challenging aspect to the investigators to recover the data without any loss of data.

ENCRYPTION

Encryption is a procedure to scramble the information.The information can only be decoded and read by an authorized person who has the right key to decrypt the encrypted files.

Example: In 2017, an incident happened where investigators found child pornography on the laptop of the Chinese citizen.He was asking for money for transferring the pornography to other people. The laptop was seized by the investigators for investigation purpose.

However, the forensic examiners were not able to open the drive as it was placed in an encrypted container. With this case scenario, we can understand that attackers generally use multiple encryption algorithms to increase the encryption level of the data. In digital forensic evidence finding  investigators can decrypt the data, but it may be pretty time consuming and sometimes the data cannot be decrypted. It is one of the major currentchallenge in digital forensicsinvestigations during encryption operation.

STEGANOGRAPHY

Steganography is a cryptographic method used to protect the file, message, image, or video within other files to avoid detection.This method is used to hide data inside a file without changing the outside appearance. After which, the secret file or data is safely extracted at the destination by the authorized receiver. During the investigation of cybercrimes, investigators usually find the evidence by revealing the hidden data.

DoS (DENIAL OF SERVICES)

DoS is an attack in which an attacker sends fake traffic to the target entity. Then the target person is unable to find the difference between the fake traffic and real traffic, so ends up with the resources. This way the real traffic gets denied by the services offered by the target person, this is anotherchallenge in digital forensic evidence finding process.

For example: A website is able to handle 50 requests/sec by clicking on buy button. Then, an attacker sends 50 fake requests/sec to stop the services.  As a result, no more users can click on the buy button.  By this, the fake traffic is distributed among the real traffic and this causes denial of services.

IoT THREATS

IoT (Internet of Things) is a system of interconnected physical devices that can be accessed through the Internet. Each device has a unique identifier (UID), which is capable to transfer the data over a network. IoT security threats and social engineering are used to steal personal data from people as well as from big companies. The data which is on IoT devices are highly susceptible to cyberattacks. Attackers can easily break the security in IoT infrastructure to execute cyberattacks.

So, it becomes a challenge that can be faced in digital forensics to find the defenders.

BLOCKCHAIN REVOLUTION

Blockchain technology is a vast global digital medium used for the peer-to-peer value exchange without any third-party establishing trust. The blockchain enables cryptocurrencies like bitcoin.

A blockchain is a list of records known as blocks that are linked with each other using cryptography. Each block contains a hash value of the previous block, a timestamp, and logs data. We cannot perform modification in the data of blockchain.

It is very hard to predict what the blockchain system allows regarding the cybersecurity.  Moreover, even the investigators and professionals in cyber forensics also make educated guesses regarding blockchain.

RANSOMWARE

Ransomware is a type of attack which is one of the challenges faced in digital forensics. It locks the data of a victim’s computer and demands money to unlock the data. After the successful transfer of money, the victim gets access to the data in his/her computer.

Ransomware attacks are rapidly growing in cybercrime. IT professionals and many big organizations are trying to make powerful recovery strategies against these attacks to protect the data.

CLOUD-BASED

In cloud computing, the third-party provider gives access to store the data over the Internet. This means multiple users can access data from multiple devices. As a result, it becomes difficult for the forensics investigators to find the evidence i.e., where the changes are being done simultaneously from multiple devices.

Few cloud attack issues are Insecure APIs, Meltdown, Data loss due to natural disaster, Specter vulnerabilities.

Concluding Lines

Technology has reached to a level wherein it can be extremely benefitted to the users in various prospects. However, criminals use technology for awful tasks such as Scamming, Phishing, Computer viruses, etc. So, to deal with cybercrimes and to find the evidence diligently, investigators may have to face several challenges in digital forensic evidence finding process. As a result, we have mentioned the different challenges in detail along with a powerful forensic software which is efficient enough to find potential evidence precisely.