Jul 21, 2021 by Foresight
Modern Technology in Criminal Law Cases
The intrinsic role that modern technology plays in solving today’s crimes can never be overstated. The gadgetry hallmarks of our professional and private lives that we all regularly facilitate every day without a second thought, our mobile devices can often be pivotal in terms of evidence in criminal law cases.
The portable devices which connect our worlds around us (from smartphones and tablets to laptops and gaming consoles) represent our lifelines, and a conduit to pretty much everything we think, feel, do or say at a moment’s notice. They can also pin us to exact locations and times too, in an ‘Orwellian’ way which might not always sit comfortably with some yet can make the world of difference when providing factually accurate evidence in criminal settings.
Smartphone tracking, WiFi capabilities, social media posts, and a host of biometrics are just a few of the sum parts which add up to a rapidly expansive data mapping total. And one which we’re well qualified to share our expert witness knowledge and experiences in, to support criminal law cases.
But what exactly are all these sum parts?
Data Mapping Crime
Data mapping is an incredibly useful tool used in criminal law practices, and in essence describes the process of matching fields across separate databases. Data migration, integration and other data management processes are facilitating by this methodology, prior to the collation being analysed and subsequently interpreted to generate insights.
Identifying the location of a mobile device, be it a smartphone, tablet or laptop, can prove invaluable in terms of confirming that the owner of the device was in a specific place at a specific time, or not. Whether an individual is stationary or moving, GPS can track movements to build a better picture of someone’s whereabouts at the time, and which can be later revisited by mobile phone analysist expert witnesses as circumstantial evidence.
Social Media Tracking
In criminal law cases, it’s legal to gather supporting evidence from social media for the purposes of defence or prosecution. These communications can be used to corroborate a suspect or witness’ statement, and also be referred to in instances where intent to commit a crime is cited. In other fields, social media tracking can be facilitated in employment scenarios, where perhaps an individual has been accused (or is defending) an allegation of workplace bullying or sexual harassment.
Where criminal law cases might be concentrated in areas such as technology development, computer science, wireless and telecommunications, information security, mobile devices, and data breaches, Wi-Fi expert witnesses can provide peerless opinions. Offering evidence to those with less understanding of these tech disciplines, clarification of a back story and provision of evidence to help shape a Wi-Fi litigation case is priceless.
This explains the measurement and statistical analysis of individuals’ unique behavioural characteristics, and is primarily serves two purposes. Identification and authentication. Both are ascertained via suspect’s fingerprints, eyes, hands, faces or voices, and in terms of applications cover various criminal law departments.
Cell Site Analysis Explained
This is the more specific term used to describe the capturing of data which we all unwittingly provide courtesy of our typical everyday movements and interactions. Our smartphones can inadvertently trace our whereabouts and daily itinerary, via GPS signals. Which in turn means that the approximate geographical location of our mobile phones (and by association, the user) can be documented whenever and wherever we make or receive phone calls, SMS messages or other data. And let’s not forget that some 92% of the UK population owns a smartphone.
The ‘cell site’ refers to a mobile phone mast, which logs a smartphone’s existence and whereabouts, enabling devices to maintain signal, irrespective of being used at the time of reportage or not. This cell data record (or CDR) records times and dates of connectivity, what other devices were communicated with, and whether the call/message was inbound or outbound. Together with the device’s IMEI and phone numbers. This is often referred to as a cell site ping.
How Cell Site Analysis Helps in Criminal Law Cases
This is invaluable when it comes to obtaining evidence which can then later be used in criminal law cases, as an expert witness in cell site analysis can then use this information to determine the likelihood of an individual being placed at a crime scene at a time of particular interest during criminal investigations.
Once instructed by a criminal law solicitor, this data will primarily be supported by CCTV footage, vehicle registration plate recognition and witness statements, so as to construct a more defined and consistent picture of what happened.
When in possession of this information, geographical mapping will be able to prove - or conversely, disprove - if individuals under suspicion can be placed in certain locations when a crime was committed. Confirming an alibi and, potentially, accomplices; or not, as the case may be.
Mobile Phone Analysis Often Integral Element of Criminal Law Case
We can not only grant you timely access to cell site analysis expert witnesses, selected from our panel of over 750 professionals with career-spanning experiences in an eclectic mix of clinical and forensic subject matter, but we can also ensure that you gain learned support from a dedicated mobile phone analyst, should a particular criminal law case demand it.
These expert witnesses differ from cell site analysts in as much as they focus on extracting data stored on memory cards or device hard drives, which normally house video and audio files, along with other deep-rooted information.
Thanks to mobile forensics, text messages, phone and caller histories, and long-standing social media posts can be legally plundered, after receiving instruction from either a prosecution or defence team. Leading to the analysis, interpreting and presentation of key content discovered on the device examined by our expert witnesses.
Any or all of the following information can be gleamed by mobile phone or device analysis conducted by one of our expert witnesses, as a means by which to provide evidence in a criminal law case.
- Contact details – friends/family/etc
- Social media activity
- Emails browsing history/search engines used
- Location data/GPS records
- Shopping habits
- Third party apps (WhatsApp, TikTok, Snapchat, etc)
- Hidden data (including deleted messages and photos)
More About Our Crime Evidence and Data Mapping Experts….
You can gain access to members of our expert witness panel who possess a wealth of knowledge and experience in cell site and mobile phone analysis, as soon as you approach our dedicated case management team. They will appoint an expert witness based on the precise requirements of your criminal law case, who will then become available to you going forward.
Our extensive expert witness panel benefit from a wide range of skill sets in both cell site and mobile phone analysis, including cell site surveys, cell mapping, and call sequencing.
Competent and well-versed in the complexities of core data mapping and information capture, our expert witnesses will compile detailed reports, which will furnish solicitors and judges with vital expert opinion, based on the facts they uncover as part of their investigations of today’s advanced technology. From this, criminal defence solicitors will then be able to source and collate as much evidence as possible.
If you’re looking to instruct us to sourcing and appointing the best qualified and experienced, independent expert witness for your case, please get in touch to learn more about our expert witness services.
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