Forensic Email Analysis
Both Inculpatory and Exculpatory Evidences are in the form of emails, which are found on various Platforms, or within wide-ranging storage types. Owing to omnipresence of the emails, the field of forensics has become mainly significant to email. Email Forensics divided into Two Categories:
Desktop-Based Email Clients
- Recover Deleted Emails:
We provide the service in which we can recover all the normal as well as permanently deleted emails by preserving its email properties in its original form. No data modification is done while recovering deleting mails.
- Repair Corrupted or Damaged Mails:
We give the service to repair all types of data whether it is corrupted or damaged in its exact form without doing any alterations on the data. The integrity of data is kept in exact form while repairing corrupted or damaged data.
- Email Header Analysis:
Email header plays an important role in recognizing the sender of an email. We can get various information that gives enough information about the sender. Other evidence in email header that indirectly will help during the forensics process:
- Sender of the email
- Network path it traversed and path of origination
- SMTP Servers it went through
- Time Stamp Detail
- Email Client information
Web-Based Email Clients
- Header Analysis: We analyze all email header and provide you with complete details of sender such as IP address, Mail Server, details of Service Provider, etc. We traces up to Internet Service Provider level to find the culprit and the route followed by the email.
- Data Migration: We provide the service to migrate the web-based email client data into various file formats to trace out an evidence. After migration of data its integrity, email properties, Metadata, folder structure, attachments, etc. are kept in exact form.
Current Challenges In Email Forensics
There are presently millions of email service providers; out of which large number of email services are measured to be the most frequently used by individuals around the world for both the personal as well as professional communication purposes. This diversity of email service providers creates it challenging for the most law enforcements to do a systematic email investigation. Some of the challenges that are faced as mentioned:
- Availability: If a situation comprises the practice of 10 diverse email service providers, it is neither likely nor necessary for examiners to have all the 10 email platforms installed as well as configured on their machines, to study artifacts for carving out an evidence.
- Varying Analysis: Emails headers are the most important part of emails that are examined at first during forensic investigation. Each email platform, whether desktop-based or web-based keep an eye on the distinct process of reading email headers. Therefore, the lack of common platform to study all emails from varying email applications is encountered.
- Time Investment: The discussed challenges mutually end up challenging lot of time investment. Investigators are guaranteed within tight plans and are not allowed to surpass them that leave them with just short time to download as well as investigate all the emails.
In many cases where the crimes are involving emails have taken place, suspects tend to remove purposefully or damage the evidence in a form of emails. Therefore, bringing up the requirement for email investigation technique that deals with discussed circumstances.
Encrypted files/Folders or even hard drives can be dreadful for the investigators to preview without the correct key or password. Therefore, it the biggest challenge while investigating emails to find out an evidence.
Stages of Email Forensic Examination
- Evaluation :
The stage of evaluation comprises of getting all the instructions, the explanation of all those instructions if it is unclear, analysis of all risks and distribution of roles and all resources. Risk analysis for law implementation may shields up valuation on the likelihood of the physical threat ongoing a suspect’s stuff and the best to counter it out.
- Collection :
The collection stage contains the labelling as well as bagging of evidential items from site, to be sealed in added tamper-evident bags. Consideration must be given to safely transporting of the material to investigator’s laboratory.
Analysis: Analysis completely depends upon the particulars of each job. It Analysis must be correct, in-depth, recorded, impartial, repeatable, and finished within the time-scales existing and resources spread. Analysis of emails covers up various portions as mentioned:
- Header Analysis :
It is the most popular way to examine the beneficial hidden personal information in email. Email Header is significant for investigation as well as collection of an evidence. Metadata present in the email headers control all the information. It comprises of all the data information related to sender/receiver, date, time, path followed by message to reach destination, etc. Therefore, this is essential information from the evidence point of view.
- Server Investigation :
Server saves the copy of all the emails even if they are removed from the mailbox. Therefore, investigation of mail servers on the request can be completed with proper legal process to take the back up of emails as well as analyze all the content or other related information.
- Network or Device Investigation:
Many times, it is impossible to take the backup of information from the servers because of its non-availability, legal or other reasons. In such situation, all the logs can be examined and maintained by the network devices such as routers, switches, firewalls etc. to get the source or any authentic information.
- Analysis of Embedded Software:
Software utilized to compose the emails or to practice emails at the server side are also embedded with information such as software edition and software utilized or other details that are quite beneficial for forensic purpose.
- Investigation of Hidden Emails
An email is consider as hidden mail when the original email that has been quoted in at least one mail in a folder, but cannot displays itself in same folder as it is deleted intentionally or even unintentionally. Therefore, investigation over the same is quiet important to get the evidence.
- Presentation :
It is a stage that mainly covers the organized report on findings, addressing all the points in initial instructions with subsequent instructions. It is given by the investigator after completing all the stages of email forensics investigation.
Chain of Custody In Forensic Investigation
The Chain of Custody is mainly Chronological Documentationfor the evidence in particular case. It is important with an electronic data as there are chances of fake data modification, deletion, or even creation.
In the Email Forensics, you need complete chain of custody report in way to show physical custody of piece of an evidence and display all the parties that are used to say it as an evidence at any given time.
Acquire Forensics provides chain of custody reports for all the Computer Forensic cases, and we powerfully recommend keeping all these documents for all types for legal proceedings.
Frequently Asked Questions
Solution: Yes, we provide the service to get an evidence from the deleted or damaged emails.
Solution: Yes, we can easily trace an IP address from your mails.
Solution: We provide various payment modes such as Mobile banking, Credit/Debit Card or Paytm.
No, there is no any kind of limitations in our email forensics service.