Uncovering Digital Evidence with Data Forensics
Data recovery services are not limited to recovering lost or damaged data. Data recovery may be done for digital forensics or for the purpose of conducting an investigation. Data may be recovered from a computer or from any device, and this may be used as evidence to help in the investigation of a crime.
What is Data Recovery?
Data recovery is the act of recovering lost or damaged files. Lost or damaged files can be caused by several reasons, with the most common reason being system failure. The operating system of your device has crashed, leaving your files inaccessible. When this happens, the files can be tracked down and copied onto another type of data storage device so they can be accessed again.
Sometimes, it’s not the operating system that encounters the problem, but the hard disk or the memory of the device. If the hard disk malfunctioning, some of the files may be damaged. In this case, only undamaged files can be retrieved during the data recovery process.
People also sometimes make the mistake of accidentally deleting important files. Through data recovery, accidentally deleted files can be restored, even if they are no longer in the recycle bin.
What is Data Forensics?
Data forensics or computer forensics is a branch of forensics that concerns the examination of digital information, specifically for the purpose of investigating a case. It mostly involves data recovery or data analysis. Data recovery is needed for uncovering hidden and encrypted files. This is a highly sensitive task because digital evidence is prone to tampering. Simply opening a file can already alter details that can be used as evidence, such as the time stamp of when it was last accessed. Data forensics ensures that the digital evidence that is going to be presented in court is valid and not tampered or edited in any way.
Computer forensics recovers or uncovers digital information, and it may also go as far as tracking down how a certain file has been changed, or how many times it underwent editing.
Two Types of Data
There are two types of data that can be investigated by digital forensics: persistent data and volatile data. Persistent data are the files that are permanently stored in the digital device. This includes the documents that you have saved on your computer, audio files or recordings on your phone, or everything that you have stored in your device that won’t be deleted unless you want to delete them.
Volatile data are the files that you lose once your digital device gets shut down or loses power. Notice how a document that you are currently working on can go missing when you experience sudden power outages. That is part of volatile data. These are the two types of data that are examined during computer forensics.
Experts find it difficult to recover and restore volatile data. Hence, it is more common for them to focus on uncovering meaningful evidence from persistent data.