Drone Forensics: The Impact and Challenges

ATKINSON, S., CARR, G., SHAW, C. and ZARGARI, Shahrzad (2020). Drone Forensics: The Impact and Challenges. In: MONTASARI, Reza, JAHANKHANI, Hamid, HILL, Richard and PARKINSON, Simon, (eds.) Advanced Sciences and Technologies for Security Applications. Springer International Publishing, 65-124.

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Link to published version:: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-030-60425-7_4
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    © 2021, Springer Nature Switzerland AG. Unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV) have surged in popularity over the last few years. With this, crime involving drones has also dramatically increased. Therefore, there is a dire need of successful Drone programmes that significantly would lower the amount of crime being committed involving Drone devices. Drone forensics is a concept that is less well known or documented. Research has shown that there have been Drone Forensic programmes to support the forensics investigations, however, many have failed for a few reasons such as the lack of understanding of the technology or other limited resources. It is also known within the Digital Forensics community that Anti-Forensics techniques are constant threats and hinder investigations, resulting in less convictions. This study aims to ascertain exactly what data can be extracted from UAV devices (Drones), the usefulness of this data, and whether consumers are able to obfuscate the data in efforts to evade detection (i.e. Anti-forensics techniques). A number of primary and secondary datasets have been utilised in this research. Primary data includes carrying out a flight using a UAV device and consequently analysing the resulting data and an interview with a qualified Digital Forensic Analyst. Secondary data was gained from VTO Labs, recommended by NIST which was able to be interrogated in order to deliver interesting results. This study found that Drones have the ability to hold a wealth of evidence that could potentially be very useful to assist forensics investigations. This included the flight path of the Drone, date and time of flight, altitude, home-point and alerts to inform whether the Drone was near restricted airspace such as airports (No Fly Zones). Moreover, it was found that it is possible for the manufacturers to build in Anti-Forensics software into their devices, but it would not be possible for a consumer to utilise such techniques.

    Item Type: Book Section
    Additional Information: Series ISSN: 1613-5113
    Identification Number: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-030-60425-7_4
    Page Range: 65-124
    SWORD Depositor: Symplectic Elements
    Depositing User: Symplectic Elements
    Date Deposited: 08 Apr 2021 13:20
    Last Modified: 08 Apr 2021 13:30
    URI: http://shura.shu.ac.uk/id/eprint/28441

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