Now showing 1 - 10 of 52
  • Publication
    An Analytical Approach to the Recovery of Data from 3rd Party Proprietary CCTV File Systems
    According to recent predictions, the global video surveillance market is expected to reach $42.06 billion annually by 2020. The market is extremely fragmented with only around 40% of the market being accounted for by the 15 top video surveillance equipment suppliers as in an annual report issued by IMS Research. The remaining market share was split amongst the numerous other smaller companies who provide CCTV solutions, usually at lower prices than their brand name counterparts. This cost cutting generally results in a lower specification of components. Recently, an investigation was undertaken in relation to a serious criminal offence, of which significant video footage had been captured on a CCTV DigitalVideo Recorder (DVR). The unit was setup to save the last 31 days of footage to an internal hard drive. However, despite the referenced footage being within this timeframe, it could not be located. The DVR unit was submitted for forensic examination anddata retrieval of specified video footage which, according to the proprietary video backup application, was not retrievable. In this paper, we present the process and method of the forensic retrieval of video footage from a DVR. The objective of this method is to retrieve the oldest video footage possible from a proprietary designed file storage system. We also evaluate our approach with a Ganz CCTV DVR system model C-MPDVR-16 to show that the file system of a DVR has been reversed engineering with no initial knowledge, application or documentation available.
  • Publication
    Forensic analysis of epic privacy browser on windows operating systems
    Internet security can be compromised not only through the threat of malware, fraud, system intrusion or damage, but also via the tracking of internet activity. Criminals are using numerous methods to access data in the highly lucrative cybercrime business. Organized crime, as well as individual users, are benefiting from the protection of Virtual Private Networks (VPNs) and private browsers, such as Tor, Epic Privacy, to carry out illegal activity such as money laundering, drug dealing, the trade of child pornography, etc. News articles advising on internet privacy assisted in educating the public and a new era of private browsing arose. Although these measures were designed to protect legitimate browsing privacy, they also provided a means to conceal illegal activity. One such tool released for private browsing was Epic Privacy Browser. It is currently used in approximately 180 countries worldwide. Epic Privacy Browser is promoted as a chromium powered browser, specifically engineered to protect users' privacy. It operates solely in "private browser" mode and, after the close of the browsing session, it automatically deletes all browsing data. The developers of Epic Privacy Browser claim that all traces of user activity will be cleared upon close of the application. However, there is no forensic acquisition and analysis of Epic Privacy Browser in literature. In this paper, we contribute towards the goal of assisting forensic examiners with the location and type of evidence available through live and post-mortem state analysis of the Epic Privacy Browser on Windows 7 and Windows 10. This analysis identifies how the browser functions during use and where data can be recovered once the browser is closed, the necessary tools that will assist in the forensics discovery, and effective presentation of the recovered material.
  • Publication
    Study of Peer-to-Peer Network Based Cybercrime Investigation: Application on Botnet Technologies
    (University College Dublin. School of Computer Science & Informatics  , 2013)
    The scalable, low overhead attributes of Peer-to-Peer (P2P) Internet protocols and networks lend themselves well to being exploited by criminals to execute a large range of cybercrimes. The types of crimes aided by P2P technology include copyright infringement, sharing of illicit images of children, fraud, hacking/cracking, denial of service attacks and virus/malware propagation through the use of a variety of worms, botnets, malware, viruses and P2P file sharing. This project is focused on study of active P2P nodes along with the analysis of the undocumented communication methods employed in many of these large unstructured networks. This is achieved through the design and implementation of an efficient P2P monitoring and crawling toolset.The requirement for investigating P2P based systems is not limited to the more obvious cybercrimes listed above, as many legitimate P2P based applications may also be pertinent to a digital forensic investigation, e.g, voice over IP, instant messaging, etc. Investigating these networks has become increasingly difficult due to the broad range of network topologies and the ever increasing and evolving range of P2P based applications. In this work we introduce the Universal P2P Network Investigation Framework (UP2PNIF), a framework which enables significantly faster and less labour intensive investigation of newly discovered P2P networks through the exploitation of the commonalities in P2P network functionality. In combination with a reference database of known network characteristics, it is envisioned that any known P2P network can be instantly investigated using the framework, which can intelligently determine the best investigation methodology and greatly expedite the evidence gathering process. A proof of concept tool was developed for conducting investigations on the BitTorrent network. A Number of investigations conducted using this tool are outlined in Chapter 6.
  • Publication
    The Case for a Collaborative Universal Peer-to-Peer Botnet Investigation Framework
    (Academic Conferences and Publishing International Limited, 2014-03-25) ;
    Peer to Peer (P2P) botnets are becoming widely used as a low overhead, efficient, self maintaining, distributed alternative to the traditional client/server model across a broad range of cyberattacks. These cyberattacks can take the form of distributed denial of service attacks, authentication cracking, spamming, cyberwarfare or malware distribution targeting on financial systems. These attacks can also cross over into the physical world attacking critical infrastructure causing its disruption or destruction (power, communications, water, etc.). P2P technology lends itself well to being exploited for such malicious purposes due to the minimal setup, running and maintenance costs involved in executing a globally orchestrated attack, alongside the perceived additional layer of anonymity. In the ever evolving space of botnet technology, reducing the time lag between discovering a newly developed or updated botnet system and gaining the ability to mitigate against it is paramount. Often, numerous investigative bodies duplicate their efforts in creating bespoke tools to combat particular threats. This paper outlines a framework capable of fast tracking the investigative process through collaboration between key stakeholders.
  • Publication
    Private Web Browser Forensics: A Case Study on Epic Privacy Browser
    (Journal of Information Warfare, 2018-03) ; ;
    Organized crime, as well as individual criminals, are benefiting from the protection of private browsers to carry out illegal activity, such as money laundering, drug trafficking, the online exchange of child abuse material, etc. Epic Privacy Browser is one common example. It is currently in use in approximately 180 countries worldwide. In this paper, we outline the location and type of evidence available through live and post-mortem state analysis of the Epic Privacy Browser. This analysis identifies how the browser functions during use and where evidence can be recovered after use, the tools, and effective presentation of the recovered material.
  • Publication
    Enabling the remote acquisition of digital forensic evidence through secure data transmission and verification
    (University College Dublin. School of Computer Science  , 2009) ;
    Providing the ability to any law enforcement officer to remotely transfer an image from any suspect computer directly to a forensic laboratory for analysis, can only help to greatly reduce the time wasted by forensic investigators in conducting on-site collection of computer equipment. RAFT (Remote Acquisition Forensic Tool) is a system designed to facilitate forensic investigators by remotely gathering digital evidence. This is achieved through the implementation of a secure, verifiable client/server imaging architecture. The RAFT system is designed to be relatively easy to use, requiring minimal technical knowledge on behalf of the user. One of the key focuses of RAFT is to ensure that the evidence it gathers remotely is court admissible. This is achieved by ensuring that the image taken using RAFT is verified to be identical to the original evidence on a suspect computer.
  • Publication
    Towards the Forensic Identification and Investigation of Cloud Hosted Servers through Non-invasive Wiretaps
    When conducting modern cybercrime investigations, evidence has often to be gathered from computer systems located at cloud-based data centres of hosting providers. In cases where the investigation cannot rely on the cooperation of the hosting provider, or where documentation is not available, investigators can often find the identification of which distinct server among many is of interest difficult and extremely time consuming. To address the problem of identifying these servers, in this paper a new approach to rapidly and reliably identify these cloud hosting computer systems is presented. In the outlined approach, a handheld device composed of an embedded computer combined with a method of undetectable interception of Ethernet based communications is presented. This device is tested and evaluated, and a discussion is provided on its usefulness in identifying of server of interest to an investigation.
      360Scopus© Citations 7
  • Publication
    Behavioral Service Graphs: A Big Data Approach for Prompt Investigation of Internet-Wide Infections
    The task of generating network-based evidence to support network forensic investigation is becoming increasingly prominent. Undoubtedly, such evidence is significantly imperative as it not only can be used to diagnose and respond to various network-related issues (i.e., performance bottlenecks, routing issues, etc.) but more importantly, can be leveraged to infer and further investigate network security intrusions and infections. In this context, this paper proposes a proactive approach that aims at generating accurate and actionable network-based evidence related to groups of compromised network machines. The approach is envisioned to guide investigators to promptly pinpoint such malicious groups for possible immediate mitigation as well as empowering network and digital forensic specialists to further examine those machines using auxiliary collected data or extracted digital artifacts. On one hand, the promptness of the approach is successfully achieved by monitoring and correlating perceived probing activities, which are typically the very first signs of an infection or misdemeanors. On the other hand, the generated evidence is accurate as it is based on an anomaly inference that fuses big data behavioral analytics in conjunction with formal graph theoretical concepts. We evaluate the proposed approach as a global capability in a security operations center. The empirical evaluations, which employ 80 GB of real darknet traffic, indeed demonstrates the accuracy, effectiveness and simplicity of the generated network-based evidence.
  • Publication
    Smarter Password Guessing Techniques Leveraging Contextual Information and OSINT
    In recent decades, criminals have increasingly used the web to research, assist and perpetrate criminal behaviour. One of the most important ways in which law enforcement can battle this growing trend is through accessing pertinent information about suspects in a timely manner. A significant hindrance to this is the difficulty of accessing any system a suspect uses that requires authentication via password. Password guessing techniques generally consider common user behaviour while generating their passwords, as well as the password policy in place. Such techniques can offer a modest success rate considering a large/average population. However, they tend to fail when focusing on a single target - especially when the latter is an educated user taking precautions as a savvy criminal would be expected to do. Open Source Intelligence is being increasingly leveraged by Law Enforcement in order to gain useful information about a suspect, but very little is currently being done to integrate this knowledge in an automated way within password cracking. The purpose of this research is to delve into the techniques that enable the gathering of the necessary context about a suspect and find ways to leverage this information within password guessing techniques.
      30Scopus© Citations 8
  • Publication
    IPv6 security and forensics
    IPv4 is the historical addressing protocol used for all devices connected worldwide. It has survived for over 30 years and has been an integral part of the Internet revolution. However, due to its limitation, IPv4 is being replacing by IPv6. Today, IPv6 is more and more widely used on the Internet. On the other hand, criminals are also well aware of the introduction of IPv6. They are continuously seeking new methods to make profit, hiding their activities, infiltrate or exfiltrate important data from companies. The introduction of this new protocol may provide savvy cybercriminals more opportunities to discover new system vulnerabilities and exploit them. To date, there is little research on IPv6 security and forensics in the literature. In this paper, we look at different types of IPv6 attacks and we present a new approach to investigate IPv6 network attack with case studies.
      36Scopus© Citations 5