Forensic identification

Forensic identification

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Forensic identification is the application of forensic science, or "forensics", and technology to identify specific objects from the trace evidence
Trace evidence
Trace evidence is evidence that occurs when different objects contact one another. Such materials are often transferred by heat induced by contact friction....

 they leave, often at a crime scene
Crime scene
A crime scene is a location where an illegal act took place, and comprises the area from which most of the physical evidence is retrieved by trained law enforcement personnel, crime scene investigators or in rare circumstances, forensic scientists....

 or the scene of an accident. Forensic means "for the courts".

Human identification


People can be identified by their fingerprint
Fingerprint
A fingerprint in its narrow sense is an impression left by the friction ridges of a human finger. In a wider use of the term, fingerprints are the traces of an impression from the friction ridges of any part of a human hand. A print from the foot can also leave an impression of friction ridges...

s. This assertion is supported by the philosophy of friction ridge identification, which states that friction ridge identification is established through the agreement of friction ridge formations, in sequence, having sufficient uniqueness to individualize.

Friction ridge identification is also governed by four premises or statements of fact:
  1. Friction ridges develop on the fetus in their definitive form prior to birth.
  2. Friction ridges are persistent throughout life except for permanent scarring, disease or decomposition after death.
  3. Friction ridge paths and the details in small areas of friction ridges are unique and never repeated.
  4. Overall, friction ridge patterns vary within limits which allow for classification.


People can also be identified from traces of their DNA by DNA fingerprinting, from their teeth or bite by forensic odontology, from a photograph or a video recording by facial recognition system
Facial recognition system
A facial recognition system is a computer application for automatically identifying or verifying a person from a digital image or a video frame from a video source...

s, from the video recording of their walk by gait analysis
Gait analysis
Gait analysis is the systematic study of animal locomotion, more specific as a study of human motion, using the eye and the brain of observers, augmented by instrumentation for measuring body movements, body mechanics, and the activity of the muscles. Gait analysis is used to assess, plan, and...

, from an audio recording by voice analysis
Voice analysis
Voice analysis is the study of speech sounds for purposes other than linguistic content, such as in speech recognition. Such studies include mostly medical analysis of the voice i.e. phoniatrics, but also speaker identification...

, from their handwriting by handwriting analysis
Questioned document examination
Questioned document examination is the forensic science discipline pertaining to documents that are in dispute in a court of law...

, from the content of their writings by their writing style (e.g. typical phrases, factual bias, and/or misspellings of words), or from other traces using other biometric techniques.

Body identification is a subfield of forensics concerned with identify someone from their remains.

Product identification

  • Color copiers and maybe some color computer printer
    Computer printer
    In computing, a printer is a peripheral which produces a text or graphics of documents stored in electronic form, usually on physical print media such as paper or transparencies. Many printers are primarily used as local peripherals, and are attached by a printer cable or, in most new printers, a...

    s steganographically
    Steganography
    Steganography is the art and science of writing hidden messages in such a way that no one, apart from the sender and intended recipient, suspects the existence of the message, a form of security through obscurity...

     embed their identification number to some printouts as a countermeasure of currency forgeries.
  • Copiers and computer printer
    Computer printer
    In computing, a printer is a peripheral which produces a text or graphics of documents stored in electronic form, usually on physical print media such as paper or transparencies. Many printers are primarily used as local peripherals, and are attached by a printer cable or, in most new printers, a...

    s can be potentially identified by the minor variants of the way they feed the paper through the printing mechanism, leaving banding
    Banding
    Banding is a medical procedure which uses elastic bands for constriction. Banding may be used to tie off blood vessels in order to stop bleeding, as in the treatment of bleeding esophageal varices. The band restricts blood flow to the ligated tissue, so that it eventually dies and sloughs away...

     artifacts. Analysis of the toner
    Toner
    Toner is a powder used in laser printers and photocopiers to form the printed text and images on the paper. In its early form it was simply carbon powder. Then, to improve the quality of the printout, the carbon was melt-mixed with a polymer...

    s is also used.
  • Document
    Document
    The term document has multiple meanings in ordinary language and in scholarship. WordNet 3.1. lists four meanings :* document, written document, papers...

    s are characterized by the composition of their paper
    Paper
    Paper is a thin material mainly used for writing upon, printing upon, drawing or for packaging. It is produced by pressing together moist fibers, typically cellulose pulp derived from wood, rags or grasses, and drying them into flexible sheets....

     and ink
    Ink
    Ink is a liquid or paste that contains pigments and/or dyes and is used to color a surface to produce an image, text, or design. Ink is used for drawing and/or writing with a pen, brush, or quill...

    .
  • Firearm
    Firearm
    A firearm is a weapon that launches one, or many, projectile at high velocity through confined burning of a propellant. This subsonic burning process is technically known as deflagration, as opposed to supersonic combustion known as a detonation. In older firearms, the propellant was typically...

    s can be identified by the striations on the bullets
    Ballistic fingerprinting
    Ballistic fingerprinting refers to a set of forensic techniques that rely on marks that firearms leave on bullets to match a bullet to the gun it was fired with...

     they fired and imprints on the cartridge casings.
  • Paper shredders can be potentially identified in a similar way, by spacing and wear of their blades.
  • Photo identification
    Photo identification
    Photo identification is generally used to define any form of identity document that includes a photograph of the holder.Some countries use a government issued card as a proof of age or citizenship.Types of photo ID cards include:*Passports...

     is used to detect and identify forged digital photos.
  • Typewriters can be identified by minor variations of positioning and wear of their letters.

Networks

  • Cars can be automatically found on CCTV
    Closed-circuit television
    Closed-circuit television is the use of video cameras to transmit a signal to a specific place, on a limited set of monitors....

     records by automatic number plate recognition
    Automatic number plate recognition
    Automatic number plate recognition is a mass surveillance method that uses optical character recognition on images to read the license plates on vehicles. They can use existing closed-circuit television or road-rule enforcement cameras, or ones specifically designed for the task...

    .
  • Computers connected to the Internet
    Internet
    The Internet is a global system of interconnected computer networks that use the standard Internet protocol suite to serve billions of users worldwide...

     can often be identified by their IP address
    IP address
    An Internet Protocol address is a numerical label assigned to each device participating in a computer network that uses the Internet Protocol for communication. An IP address serves two principal functions: host or network interface identification and location addressing...

     or MAC address
    MAC address
    A Media Access Control address is a unique identifier assigned to network interfaces for communications on the physical network segment. MAC addresses are used for numerous network technologies and most IEEE 802 network technologies, including Ethernet...

    .
  • Radio transceiver
    Transceiver
    A transceiver is a device comprising both a transmitter and a receiver which are combined and share common circuitry or a single housing. When no circuitry is common between transmit and receive functions, the device is a transmitter-receiver. The term originated in the early 1920s...

    s can be potentially identified by minute variations of their output signal.
  • Social networks can be discovered by network analysis
    Network analysis
    Network analysis can refer to:* Analysis of general networks: see Network theory.* Electrical network analysis see Network analysis .* Social network analysis.You may also be interested in Network planning and design...

     of banking, telecommunication and postal records.

Applications


Sometimes, manufacturers and film distributor
Film distributor
A film distributor is a company or individual responsible for releasing films to the public either theatrically or for home viewing...

s may intentionally leave subtle forensic markings on their products to identify them in case of piracy or involvement in a crime. (Cf. watermark
Watermark
A watermark is a recognizable image or pattern in paper that appears as various shades of lightness/darkness when viewed by transmitted light , caused by thickness or density variations in the paper...

, digital watermark, steganography
Steganography
Steganography is the art and science of writing hidden messages in such a way that no one, apart from the sender and intended recipient, suspects the existence of the message, a form of security through obscurity...

.)

Organizations

  • Association of Firearm and Tool Mark Examiners
    Association of Firearm and Tool Mark Examiners
    The Association of Firearm and Tool Mark Examiners is an international non-profit organization dedicated to the advancement of firearm and tool mark identification, which is one of the forensic sciences.- Organizational history :...

  • Canadian Identification Society
    Canadian Identification Society
    The Canadian Identification Society is a bilingual professional non-for-profit fellowship of police officers and civilian members who share interests and employment in crime scene investigation...

  • International Association for Identification
    International Association for Identification
    The International Association for Identification is the largest forensic organization in the world.The IAI was originally formed as the "International Association for Criminal Identification" in October 1915...


See also



  • Biometric identification
    Biometrics
    Biometrics As Jain & Ross point out, "the term biometric authentication is perhaps more appropriate than biometrics since the latter has been historically used in the field of statistics to refer to the analysis of biological data [36]" . consists of methods...

  • Computer forensics
    Computer forensics
    Computer forensics is a branch of digital forensic science pertaining to legal evidence found in computers and digital storage media...

  • Data remanence
    Data remanence
    Data remanence is the residual representation of data that remains even after attempts have been made to remove or erase the data. This residue may result from data being left intact by a nominal file deletion operation, by reformatting of storage media that does not remove data previously written...

  • Digital traces
  • Entomological evidence collection
    Entomological evidence collection
    Entomological evidence collection is the process of collecting evidence based on insect clues to be used in criminal investigations. If evidence is not carefully preserved at a crime scene after a death, it may be difficult or impossible for an entomologist to make an accurate identification of...


  • Forensic anthropology
    Forensic anthropology
    Forensic anthropology is the application of the science of physical anthropology and human osteology in a legal setting, most often in criminal cases where the victim's remains are in the advanced stages of decomposition. A forensic anthropologist can assist in the identification of deceased...

  • Forensic dentistry
    Forensic Dentistry
    Forensic dentistry or forensic odontology is the proper handling, examination and evaluation of dental evidence, which will be then presented in the interest of justice. The evidence that may be derived from teeth, is the age and identification of the person to whom the teeth belong...

     (odontology)
  • Forensic profiling
    Forensic profiling
    Forensic profiling refers to the study and the exploitation of traces in order to draw a profile relevant to the supporting of various security tasks, mostly in the criminal justice system. The term forensic in this context refers to "information that is used in court as evidence" . The traces...

  • Information forensics
  • Identification (biology)
    Identification (biology)
    Identification in biology is the process of assigning a pre-existing individual or class name to an individual organism. Identification of organisms to individual names may be based on individualistic natural body features Identification in biology is the process of assigning a pre-existing...


  • Mass surveillance
    Mass surveillance
    Mass surveillance is the pervasive surveillance of an entire population, or a substantial fraction thereof.Modern governments today commonly perform mass surveillance of their citizens, explaining that they believe that it is necessary to protect them from dangerous groups such as terrorists,...

  • Privacy
    Privacy
    Privacy is the ability of an individual or group to seclude themselves or information about themselves and thereby reveal themselves selectively...

  • Surveillance
    Surveillance
    Surveillance is the monitoring of the behavior, activities, or other changing information, usually of people. It is sometimes done in a surreptitious manner...

  • Trace evidence
    Trace evidence
    Trace evidence is evidence that occurs when different objects contact one another. Such materials are often transferred by heat induced by contact friction....

  • Questioned Document Examination
    Questioned document examination
    Questioned document examination is the forensic science discipline pertaining to documents that are in dispute in a court of law...



External links