Victims and witnesses are encountered every day in law enforcement and you can almost guarantee that they will have some sort of digital evidence to go along with their account of the situation or incident. No need to look any further than the window to their world: their mobile device.
Mobile devices have become an everyday item and can be seen in the hands of just about everyone you pass on the streets today. When you finally have the time to slow down and take a look around you start to see how the devices are being used; texting, voice call, video calling, pictures, selfies, video, directions, shopping, searching, games, IoT device control and work.
One of the first things a victim or witness may do is to document the incident, whether purposely or inadvertently, there will be a trail of the incident of some form, a voice conversation, a text message, an email, a photograph, or several of the aforementioned. As an investigator, you interview and find that there is a nexus from the event to the victim-witness to a digital device to others that may be involved. This simple chain of causation is not so simple for you the investigator.
Victims and witnesses are generally willing to share any evidence or information that they may possess, however, they may be reluctant to share this data if the conditions are not favorable. A victim witness may not want to part with their device for any length of time or have it leave their possession.
Mobile devices contain personal information, as mentioned above, a window to one's world, and be their only source of information for support or connection to the world. Ask yourself, would you give anyone your phone to peruse? If not careful the evidence you seek can walk out the door, this may be your only chance to collect the information. Working with the victim witness with simple solutions and compassion will work wonders for you at this moment.
Sitting with the victim witness and allowing them to show you the data that is relevant and important is a start. Advising them that you have a solution to record or document the data while they watch, (they can even control the device), will almost ensure that they will be willing to assist in the investigation. The victim witness will not lose control of their device, they won't need to share irrelevant information, and the impact on their time can be minimized.
ADF Solutions has released a new feature in Mobile Device Investigator and our PRO version that allows you to document the evidence that is in front of you, here and now, that has the potential to walk and never be seen again. Screen recording, mirroring, screenshots, and screenshots of apps with security policies, allow frontline personnel and investigators the opportunity to easily collect data, on scene, now.
Using the screen recording feature, law enforcement can easily record and view videos of the Android device's screen, in real-time. Not only can you now see what they saw, but you can also hear them.
Being able to record their screen during an encounter can be a crucial piece of information for investigators to establish the truth of what happened. Whether the screen recording is from a witness's device or the actual suspect device, it is easy to obtain and process using ADF's PRO and Mobile Forensics tools.