Digital Forensics is an expanding field that embraces the exponential growth of new technology. As our lives become more dependent on devices such as smart phones, lap tops, and personal computers the need for specially trained investigators grows. A Digital Forensic Examiner collects evidence from a large variety of sources to assist in solving crimes. Many devices such as a cell phone, surveillance camera recording system, portable music player, or even a tablet computer can be processed to find evidence.
The role of the examiner is to evaluate and interpret data obtained from properly packaged electronic evidence and present it in a way to assist an investigation. The data is extracted in a forensically sound and industry approved manner that creates an exact duplicate without altering the original data. The duplicate is then examined using various software, techniques, and procedures. This method preserves the original evidence and allows for a thorough investigation at the same time.
The Digital Forensics Unit assists in a large variety of investigations. The unit has worked on cases including financial fraud, homicide, robbery, possession of illegal digital material, arson, and stalking. Along with the specialized investigations, the unit also assists in routine cases every St. Louis County Police unit and bureau conducts. Most cases have an element that requires an examiner to process evidence.