Yuval, could you start by telling us more about your role at Cellebrite?
At Cellebrite, we firmly believe in maintaining very open communication channels with the global community of forensics specialists. Through these, we deliver the latest developments and information, ensuring law enforcement and other professionals are kept up-to-date with this rapidly-evolving domain. My role is to facilitate one of these key channels by representing Cellebrite at summits and conferences and delivering content.
In addition, I’m also responsible for running seminars with customers and users, again, facilitating open and direct dialogue, to share what’s new and more importantly, put a very attentive ear to what customers want or need. This ensures we always focus on meeting their ever-changing requirements.Cellebrite management and product management enables me to provide a clear knowledge of what customers need and what they will need soon, so that we’ll be ready with the right solutions when challenges occur.
What challenges within the digital forensic industry is Cellebrite aiming to address?
The best answer I can give is: helping law enforcement and other digital forensics specialists deal with ever-changing challenges within this rapidly-evolving domain. I’ve discussed some of these during my presentation at Forensics Europe Expo. They range from dealing with a constantly-increasing workload, through to the extremely dynamic domain where new and sophisticated devices are introduced almost daily, plus many more technological issues in obtaining digital evidence from complex, sophisticated devices.
Tell us more about the products and solutions offered by Cellebrite, and what sets them apart from similar forensics tools.
Cellebrite is committed to providing law enforcement and other digital forensics professionals with the right solutions to obtain evidence from mobile devices efficiently and within a controlled process supporting the admissibility to a court of law. As such, the range of products covers everything needed to get the evidence and produce a report that can later be used in court. Our products cover all the necessary steps along the way, allowing filtering and searching through enormous amounts of data to help the investigators find the really important evidence. Furthermore, we also provide visualisation tools to allow investigators to sort through the data, to find what’s really needed and important.
There are many things that set Cellebrite apart from all other tools, including the frequency with which our products are updated – making sure customers are always one step ahead of the market – and releasing new developments at a rate that is unmatched by anyone else.
What can we expect from Cellebrite over the next couple of years? Are there any new developments we should be aware of?
Our customers can always trust Cellebrite to be at the forefront; keeping them up-to-date and one step ahead – this is engrained within all our ranks. We listen to our customers as well, and will always look to address their needs and challenges.
How important are emerging markets to the digital forensics field? What are the unique challenges associated with them, and how can they be addressed?
All markets are equally as important, with each one carrying unique factors resulting from its legal system, mobile device penetration rate, usage patterns, demographics and many other issues. We try to accommodate each market and match our products and offerings to its characteristics. Not all emerging markets have the same challenges, but many are faced with legal systems that do not recognise digital evidence as admissible in criminal proceedings; a legal system that does not empower law enforcement to investigate digital devices and of course, lack of budgets and funds.
You mentioned in your presentation at this year's Forensics Europe Expo that mobile malware detection is a particular interest of yours – can you tell us more?
Mobile malware is a growing challenge for us all as it involves three major trends competing with each other. Firstly, mobile devices are becoming more embedded in our day-to-day routines, carrying more data, and becoming critical for many aspects of our lives. Secondly, malware is increasingly being introduced into the realm of mobile devices, carrying the risk of jeopardising the mobile devices in our lives. Finally, detection and prevention tools are also improving, competing with malware sophistication and protecting us from danger. As long as item three keeps up with item one and both are ahead of item two, we should be okay, otherwise it may impact the use of mobile devices and render it unsafe for critical or personal data.
What do you think the next developments in mobile forensics will be?
No-one can know what will happen tomorrow, especially in our dynamic and rapidly-changing field. I can only say that as it seems right now, mobile device usage will grow and become more embedded in our daily lives, supporting and enhancing more functions, becoming more sophisticated and complex. With that said, for the forensics professional, this means more opportunities for reflecting on people’s actions by obtaining evidence from mobile devices, and therefore a much wider and richer evidential landscape.
Yuval Ben Moshe is the Forensics Technical Director at Cellebrite, a leading manufacturer of data extraction, transfer and analysis equipment for mobile devices. Cellebrite's mobile forensics division produces software and hardware used by law enforcement, intelligence agencies, corporate security and private digital forensic examiners worldwide.