Tag Archives: Evidence Talks

Innovation and Technology Award win for Evidence Talks

Evidence Talks, a dedicated specialist in the development and marketing of digital forensics techniques, has won the Innovation and Technology Award category at the Milton Keynes Business Achievement Awards 2017.

The winning submission for the company highlighted its pioneering SPEKTOR technology developed by CTO Andrew Sheldon, drawing attention to its role in digital triage, overt and covert forensic acquisition, forensic e-mail investigation and remote forensics.

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The latest development from the business has been the global launch of SPEKTOR Cascade Forensics and client-server architecture that combines the core SPEKTOR technology with policy-based automated processing logic designed to reduce the number of steps between seizure and review, reducing delays in procedures and speeding up the entire process.

Evidence Talks works with security, defence, law enforcement and corporate governance sector professionals around the world, helping to combat child exploitation and abuse, crime and fraud, people trafficking and cyber bullying.

Accepting the award on behalf of the company, CEO Elizabeth Sheldon (pictured above with Andrew Sheldon) said: “We’re delighted to have won this award against competition from the likes of Marshall Amplification and Lohmann Technologies, which are themselves world class organisations. It’s an honour to have won in the Innovation and Technology category.”

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Evidence Talks moves to new headquarters in Buckinghamshire

Evidence Talks, the digital forensic specialist business which now provides its services to law enforcement, Government, security operations and corporates all over the world, has moved across Milton Keynes to new premises overlooking Willen Lake.

Recently, the company’s CEO Elizabeth Sheldon and CTO Andrew Sheldon hosted an official opening where a mix of clients, suppliers and staff enjoyed a highly successful networking event.

In a warmly-received welcoming address, Elizabeth Sheldon briefly reviewed the company’s 14-year history, with a record sales year in 2016 the undoubted highlight. Sheldon also commented on the substantial Government contracts won by Evidence Talks in both the UK and the US, with the consequent expansion of the business including five new members of staff and the move to the new headquarters.

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Paying tribute to all the business communities represented at the gathering, Sheldon said: “I would like to thank our customers and suppliers for their support and our members of staff for their professionalism and enthusiasm. We have some of the best digital forensic technology in the world at the moment, and it seems that both the UK and the US Governments agree that we have the ideas, innovation and ability to create the forensic technologies of the future.”

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Evidence Talks launches SPEKTOR Rapid Imager for forensic imaging “at unparalleled speeds”

A global collaboration between digital forensics specialist Evidence Talks and Australia-based Schatz Forensic will afford investigators in law enforcement, Government agencies and Corporate Security Departments the ability to create forensic images significantly faster than when using traditional techniques.

The breakthrough in forensic imaging speed in a triage tool comes as a result of integration between Evidence Talks’ SPEKTOR solution and Schatz Forensic’s next generation forensic imaging technology, named Evimetry. Evimetry is based on the peer-reviewed AFF4 forensic image file format, advanced compression and intelligent sequencing of disk access.

Dr Bradley Schatz, director of Schatz Forensic and an inventor of the AFF4 forensic image format, has a PhD in Digital Forensics, a Bachelor’s degree in Computer Science, 23 years experience in IT and 13 years in digital forensics. Schatz is a globally recognised leader in forensic research, with appointments across the leading publication venues of the field.

Andrew Sheldon MSc, Chief Technical Officer of Evidence Talks and originator of the SPEKTOR forensic platform, has 37 years of experience in IT, 23 of which have focused on forensic computing. He holds a Masters degree in the discipline from the Centre for Forensic Computing at the Royal Military College of Science, Cranfield University and is a regular speaker at industry events.

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Sheldon commented: “During our research into methods of reducing forensic imaging times, I discovered Dr Schatz and his work on the peer reviewed and forensically sound AFF4 imaging format. Further development of this work by Schatz Forensic was so close to our desired objectives that we approached him to work collaboratively and combine the technology into the SPEKTOR product range. This has accelerated our ability to deliver outstanding performance to a market that’s demanding faster image creation in order to cope with massive increases in target media capacities.”

Exclusive licensing agreement

Now, with an exclusive licensing agreement in the triage space, Evidence Talks is embedding the necessary code across its SPEKTOR product suite. In a recent test, the SPEKTOR Rapid Imager produced a full linear image on a MacBook Air with 120 GB storage in under four minutes. That can be set against the previous timeframe using industry standard tools of some 45 minutes.

SPEKTOR Rapid Imager isn’t just fast when imaging SSD media. It’s optimised for slower systems employing rotational media with tests indicating significant reductions in imaging times.

The new system was launched at the 2016 F3 annual workshop in Gloucester on Tuesday 8 November. Evidence Talks is a founder member of F3, which is a non-profit organisation helping to provide low-cost training for digital forensic practitioners.

Commenting on the product release, Dr Bradley Schatz said: “We recognised very early in discussions with Andrew Sheldon that Evidence Talks had the vision and will to lead the forensic triage market to preserve more evidence in less time. This vision aligns perfectly with that of Schatz Forensic. The seamless integration of SPEKTOR and the Evimetry imager engine provides a dramatic increase in digital forensic triage performance which will have immediate and measurable benefits for end users.”

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ADS Group Council member welcomes Home Office report on forensic science

Elizabeth Sheldon (Aerospace, Defence and Security Group Council member and CEO of Evidence Talks) has welcomed the publication of a Home Office report entitled ‘Forensic Science Strategy – A National Approach to Forensic Science Delivery in the Criminal Justice System.’

Drawing attention to some of the key conclusions in the report, Sheldon has identified the case for “real-time forensics to be at the heart of a new approach” as an encouragement to police forces to step up the use of techniques such as digital triage and reduce the backlog of cases.

“The report talks of a new vision which could enable a single forensic deployment to cover all requirements; from traditional evidence recovery to digital triage and basic crime reporting,” explained Sheldon. “It also stresses the importance of a consistent national approach, and anticipates an improvement in the delivery time of results and swifter criminal justice outcomes.”

ElizabethSheldon

Sheldon (pictured above) points towards supportive research on such observations, citing the paper from Overill, Silomon and Roscoe published by Elsevier in 2013 and entitled: ‘Triage Template Pipelines in Digital Forensic Investigations’ which drew attention to the burgeoning use of digital devices as a prime driver of the need for greater use of digital forensics by the police service.

The report included the following statement: ‘The very reliance of digital devices for the conduct of most people’s daily professional and personal lives has led to an overload on digital forensic examination resources.’

By way of an example, it refers to figures from the Metropolitan Police Service’s Digital Electronics and Forensics Service showing some 38,000 digital devices per annum being received for examination by a team of 80 staff.

Skills and technical capabilities

In a further reference to the Home Office report, Sheldon says the Home Office is right to focus on the fact that “the crime scene investigators need the skills and technical capabilities to allow forensic information to be collected and processed at scene and directed to the most appropriate database or end user.”

The good news, explains Sheldon, is that technology and training is readily available from industry specialists allowing police forces to get up-to-speed. Such solutions can be used by non-technical operators, after relevant training, to quickly and safely investigate the contents of devices within the desired charging time frame.

In summing up, Sheldon quotes from the Ministerial Foreword to the Home Office report, which is written by Mike Penning MP, the Minister for Policing, Fire and Criminal Justice and Victims. Penning states: “Digital technology has transformed how we live our lives. We need to ensure that those responsible for our protection continue to have the capabilities to investigate crime in this new technological age.”

Penning’s call to reshape the current landscape towards a modern forensic science provision, believes Sheldon, will be greeted with equal enthusiasm by police forces and the supplier community.

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