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Guide for Setting up State-of-the-Art Cyber Forensic Laboratory

Introduction

Texial Cyber Security is an organization that provides specialized services to Law Enforcement agencies. Texial offers a complete range of forensic services and solutions, including litigation consulting, electronic discovery and forensic casework. We have a futuristic cybercrime and digital forensic center which offers solutions catering to different segments of the society such as law enforcement agencies, private investigators, individuals, corporate and the government.

We combine in-depth experience and comprehensive capabilities to provide consulting, software solutions and services across multiple verticals. 

Crime has taken on new forms around the country, with the nature of crimes varying sharply and a burgeoning youth demographic. Statistics point to new trends across the country, with unscrupulous entities employing hi-tech and discreet methods to break the law. Law Enforcement personnel and Investigations officers find the skills they have to be inadequate to deal with this new wave. Therefore, there exists a need for equipping investigating agencies in the latest forensic practices and technologies. 

In this regard, We want to Guide on How to set up an end-to-end infrastructure for Digital Forensics that would provide essential tools and equip their students to learn and educate in the field of Digital and Cyber forensics. 

They would mainly involve imparting skills and digital forensics tools usage to stay competent in streamlining investigative processes. The lab is to incorporate end-to-end infrastructure with necessary equipment’s and tools.
Texial, proposes to set up Digital Forensic Lab that would impart quality tools in digital forensics. We have the requisite expertise with regards to setting up of facilities as well as training – right from procurement and supply of hardware, to installation and commissioning of state-of-the-art infrastructure. We utilize cutting edge technologies and holistic processes for perfect execution of all operations. We look forward to setting up and staffing a state-of-the-art facility covering various practices of Digital Forensics.

Cybercrime or a digital crime is one of the most common types of crime in our world. 

Every year the cyber-related crimes are increasing. So we must need a proper lab setup for the
investigation. Nowadays the labs are more advanced than in the olden day. So the investigation
process is also become easy because of the investigation of certain tools. So let’s look into
how to set up a digital forensic lab deeply.

There are mainly six-phase for developing a digital forensic lab that are:

  1. Planning
  2. Identification of proper space for the construction of a lab
  3. Select the equipment’s and things need for the lab
  4. Installation and purchase of the software tools
  5. Security controls
  6. Lab Management

Phase-1: Planning

We need to have a proper plan about how to set up a lab, what are the things needed for the creation of the lab, you should have an idea approximate budget for the construction of
the lab etc. should be identified in this stage. After proper planning only we can go to the next
step. If you have a proper plan the construction with happens easily. After planning you got an idea about how a lab has been developed.

 

Phase-2: Identification of the proper space for the construction of a lab

In this you need to look for a proper location or building with a neat environment
because you need to keep our lab always clean, digital things always need a cold environment
for proper functioning. The lab should be in an air-conditioned room.

 

Phase-3: Select equipment’s need for the lab

The most important things need in a digital forensic lab includes Computers with
a licensed operating system, Intrusion alarm should be there in entrance, Monitoring camera,
every computer must have UPS etc. and common things like tables chairs etc. will be needed.

 

Phase-4: Installation of tool

Digital forensic is a vast area. So there we need more tools for investigation. Based on
different variety of digital evidence number of tools is there. Digital forensic have different
categories like Mobile forensic, Cloud forensic, Network forensic video forensic, etc. Number
of tools are available, some of them are open source for some tools we need to pay for. Some
important tools needed for a lab include:

  • Disk and data Capturing Tools
  • Registry analyzing Tools
  • Email analyzing Tools
  • Network analyzing Tools
  • Mobile analyzing Tools

Disk and data capturing tools:

These tools mainly used to extract the image of certain systems, pen drive, etc. and data
capturing tools are used to extract the potential artifacts from the email, pen drive, Mobile
phones etc.

  • Autopsy:

    It is an open-source tool used to extract the data from image files, emails, etc. It
    is easy to use and we can use it in both Unix and windows.

  •  X-Way forensics:

    X Way forensics is an imaging and disk cloning tool it is not an open-source tool we
    need to pay for it.

  • FTK Imager:

    FTK Imager is an open-source tool that is used to create the image of the computer,
    mobile phone pen drive, etc. and we can also use it to analyze

  • Bulk Extractor:

    It is an open-source tool for data carving. It scans the image file and finds email
    addresses, URLs, and credit card numbers. We can use it in windows and link.

  • Foremost:

    Foremost is another open-source tool for data carving and data recovery. It carves
    files based on their headers, footer and internal data. It is not available in windows it
    only runs in UNIX.

  • Scalpel:

    It is also a file carver it reads the database of the header and footer and extracts files. It is an open-source tool. It runs in both Windows and Linux. 

     These are some important data carving and disk imaging tools need in the digital forensic lab for analyzing the sample. So many tools are in the built-in Linux operating system.

     

Registry analyzing tool 

 The registry is a box of information that may contain some treasure-like information for the investigation of digital evidence. It’s a database contain information like user name,  browser details, unauthorized entries, etc. It also shows about malicious information like  Trojan and malware information were also found in the registries. Let’s see some important registry analysis tools. 

  1. Windows Registry: 

It is a registry analyzing tool in windows it’s an in-build software in windows. It contains the database of the things we did in the system. We can able to edit the registry by using this software. 

  1. Regshot: 

It is an open-source tool used for analyzing the registry. It is also a malware analysis tool. It notifies if there is any change on the windows registry. 

 

Email analyzing tool 

 There are so many free tools and payable tools are available for email analysis. Some  of them are mention below; 

  1. Xtractor:

    It is a software developed to extract email addresses, telephone numbers, and messages from multiple sources. It is an open-source tool used in windows. 

  1. Stellar Email Forensic:

    Stellar offers mail recovery solutions in case of data loss due to damage and corruption of Email. It is also an open-source tool.  

Some other email forensic tools include: 

  • Bulk extractor 
  • Xplico 
  • Adi4mail etc.

     

Network analyzing tool: 

In forensic, network analyzing tools play an important role. So a digital forensic lab must need some network analyzing tool for analyzing each network.

  1. Wireshark:

    It is a commonly used network analyzing tool. It is an open-source tool and we can easily handle it. It shows the packets of the network very clearly. We can use this in both Windows and Linux. 

  1. Network miner:

    It is a network analyzing tool for windows (also works in Linux Mac os/ FreeBSD). It analyses the network and it is helpful for passive network sniffing, packet capturing to detect operating systems, sessions, hostnames, open ports, etc. It is easy to use and it’s a less time-consuming software. 

     

Mobile analyzing tools: 

 Mobile Forensic tools are very important in a digital forensic lab. Because the crime related to mobile is increasing day by day. So here we are going to present some important mobile forensic tools. 

Open source tools: 

  1. AF Logical OSE:

    It is an application in APK format that is installed beforehand within the Android terminal. It extracted all the detail from a phone and also extracted from the SD card.

  2. Open source android forensic:

    It is a framework that brings together various tools that permit the analysis of the mobile device.
    Some other tools are: 

  • FTK Imager
  • Lime Memory Extractor
  • Android data extractor
  • Whatsapp extractor
  • Skype extractor etc. 

Paid tools include: 

  • Cellebrite 
  • Encase
  • Oxygen forensic 
  • MOBILedit 
  • Elcomsoft IOS Forensic Toolkit etc. 

Phase- 5: Security Controls

 In the lab, we need to maintain security. It is an important concern in forensic. We need to maintain physical security and data security. Data security deals with making sure that all the information processed and developed will be secured. Physical security is nothing but you should avoid unauthorized person entry etc. 

 

Phase-6: Lab management

 This is the final step for creating a digital forensic lab. After completing all the above steps we need to look for lab management. Now the lab is operational. The key to the success of the lab is how it is maintained and managed. So we need to manage the lab well by appointing proper employees, applying certain policies and procedures, proper maintenances, etc. will help the development of the lab. 

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