Difference between revisions of "Research Topics"

From ForensicsWiki
Jump to: navigation, search
m (Flash Memory)
m
 
(72 intermediate revisions by 5 users not shown)
Line 1: Line 1:
; Research Ideas
+
Interested in doing research in computer forensics? Looking for a master's topic, or just some ideas for a research paper? Here is our list. Please feel free to add your own ideas.
  
Interested in doing research in computer forensics? Looking for a master's topic, or just some ideas for a research paper? Here is my list. Please feel free to add your own ideas.  
+
Many of these would make a nice master's project.
  
 +
=Programming/Engineering Projects=
  
=Hard Problems=
+
; tcpflow:
* Stream Based Disk Forensics. Process the entire disk with one pass, or at most two, to minimize seek time.
+
* Modify [[tcpflow]]'s iptree.h implementation so that it only stores discriminating bit prefixes in the tree, similar to D. J. Bernstein's [http://cr.yp.to/critbit.html Crit-bit] trees.
* Determine the device that created an image or video without metadata. (fingerprinting digital cameras)
+
* Determine why [[tcpflow]]'s iptree.h implementation's ''prune'' works differently when caching is enabled then when it is disabled
* Automatically detect falsified digital evidence.
+
* Use the location of where data resides on a computer as a way of inferring information about the computer's past.
+
* Detect and diagnose sanitization attempts.  
+
* Recover overwritten data.
+
  
=Tool Development=
+
;SleuthKit
==[[AFF]] Enhancement==
+
* Write a FUSE-based mounter for SleuthKit, so that disk images can be forensically mounted using TSK.
* Evaluation of the AFF data page size. What is the optimal page size for compressed forensic work?
+
* Modify SleuthKit's API so that the physical location on disk of compressed files can be learned.
* Replacement of the AFF "BADFLAG" approach for indicating bad data with a bitmap.
+
* Modify aimage so that it can take a partial disk image and a disk and just image what's missing.
+
* Improve the data recovery features of aimage.
+
* Replace AFF's current table-of-contents system with one based on B+ Trees.
+
  
==Decoders and Validators==
+
=Digital Forensics Education=
* A JPEG decompresser that supports restarts and checkpointing for use in high-speed carving. It would also be useful it the JPEG decompressor didn't actually decompress --- all it needs to do is to verify the huffman table.
+
* Survey existing DFE programs and DF practitioners regarding which tools they use. Report if the tools being taught are the same as the tools that are being used.
  
==Cell Phones==
+
=Data Sniffing=
Open source tools for:
+
* Create a method to detect NTFS-compressed cluster blocks on a disk (RAW data stream). A method could be to write a generic signature to detect the beginning of NTFS-compressed file segments on a disk. This method is useful in carving and scanning for textual strings.
* Imaging the contents of a cell phone memory
+
* Reassembling information in a cell phone memory
+
  
 +
=Anti-Frensics Detection=
 +
* A pluggable rule-based system that can detect the residual data or other remnants of running a variety of anti-forensics software
  
 +
===Carvers===
 +
Develop a new carver with a plug-in architecture and support for fragment reassembly carving. Take a look at:
 +
* [[Carver 2.0 Planning Page]]
 +
* ([mailto:rainer.poisel@gmail.com Rainer Poisel']) [https://github.com/rpoisel/mmc Multimedia File Carver], which allows for the reassembly of multimedia fragmented files.
  
=Corpora Development=
+
===Correlation Engine===
==Realistic Corpora==
+
* Logfile correlation
* Simulated disk imags
+
* Document identity identification
* Simulated network traffic
+
* Correlation between stored data and intercept data
==Real Data==
+
* Online Social Network Analysis
* Digital Cameras
+
 
* Cell phones
+
===Data Snarfing/Web Scraping===
* USB Memory Sticks ''below'' the logical layer.
+
* Find and download in a forensically secure manner all of the information in a social network (e.g. Facebook, LinkedIn, etc.) associated with a targeted individual.
 +
* Determine who is searching for a targeted individual. This might be done with a honeypot, or documents with a tracking device in them, or some kind of covert Facebook App.
 +
* Automated grouping/annotation of low-level events, e.g. access-time, log-file entry, to higher-level events, e.g. program start, login
 +
 
 +
 
 +
===Enhancements for Guidance Software's Encase===
 +
* Develop an EnScript that allows you to script EnCase from Python. (You can do this because EnScripts can run arbitrary DLLs. The EnScript calls the DLL. Each "return" from the DLL is a specific EnCase command to execute. The EnScript then re-enters the DLL.)
 +
 
 +
=== Volume/File System analysis ===
 +
* Analysis of inter snapshot changes in [[Windows Shadow Volumes]]
 +
* Modify SleuthKit's NTFS implementation to support NTFS encrypted files (EFS)
 +
* Extend SleuthKit's implementation of NTFS to cover Transaction NTFS (TxF) (see [[NTFS]])
 +
* Physical layer access to flash storage (requires reverse-engineering proprietary APIs for flash USB and SSD storage.)
 +
* Add support to SleuthKit for [[Resilient File System (ReFS)|ReFS]].
 +
 
 +
==Error Rates==
 +
* Develop improved techniques for identifying encrypted data. (It's especially important to distinguish encrypted data from compressed data).
 +
* Quantify the error rate of different forensic tools and processes. Are these rates theoretical or implementation dependent? What is the interaction of the error rates and the [[Daubert]] standard?
 +
 
 +
==Research Areas==
 +
These are research areas that could easily grow into a PhD thesis.
 +
* General-purpose detection of:
 +
** Stegnography
 +
** Sanitization attempts
 +
** Evidence Falsification (perhaps through inconsistency in file system allocations, application data allocation, and log file analysis.
 +
* Visualization of data/information in digital forensic context
 +
* SWOT of current visualization techniques in forensic tools; improvements; feasibility of 3D representation;
 +
 
 +
==See Also==
 +
* [http://itsecurity.uiowa.edu/securityday/documents/guan.pdf Digital Forensics: Research Challenges and Open Problems, Dr. Yong Guan, Iowa State University, Dec. 4, 2007]
 +
* [http://www.forensicfocus.com/project-ideas Forensic Focus: Project Ideas for Digital Forensics Students]
 +
 
 +
__NOTOC__
 +
 
 +
[[Category:Research]]

Latest revision as of 21:33, 25 September 2014

Interested in doing research in computer forensics? Looking for a master's topic, or just some ideas for a research paper? Here is our list. Please feel free to add your own ideas.

Many of these would make a nice master's project.

Programming/Engineering Projects

tcpflow
  • Modify tcpflow's iptree.h implementation so that it only stores discriminating bit prefixes in the tree, similar to D. J. Bernstein's Crit-bit trees.
  • Determine why tcpflow's iptree.h implementation's prune works differently when caching is enabled then when it is disabled
SleuthKit
  • Write a FUSE-based mounter for SleuthKit, so that disk images can be forensically mounted using TSK.
  • Modify SleuthKit's API so that the physical location on disk of compressed files can be learned.

Digital Forensics Education

  • Survey existing DFE programs and DF practitioners regarding which tools they use. Report if the tools being taught are the same as the tools that are being used.

Data Sniffing

  • Create a method to detect NTFS-compressed cluster blocks on a disk (RAW data stream). A method could be to write a generic signature to detect the beginning of NTFS-compressed file segments on a disk. This method is useful in carving and scanning for textual strings.

Anti-Frensics Detection

  • A pluggable rule-based system that can detect the residual data or other remnants of running a variety of anti-forensics software

Carvers

Develop a new carver with a plug-in architecture and support for fragment reassembly carving. Take a look at:

Correlation Engine

  • Logfile correlation
  • Document identity identification
  • Correlation between stored data and intercept data
  • Online Social Network Analysis

Data Snarfing/Web Scraping

  • Find and download in a forensically secure manner all of the information in a social network (e.g. Facebook, LinkedIn, etc.) associated with a targeted individual.
  • Determine who is searching for a targeted individual. This might be done with a honeypot, or documents with a tracking device in them, or some kind of covert Facebook App.
  • Automated grouping/annotation of low-level events, e.g. access-time, log-file entry, to higher-level events, e.g. program start, login


Enhancements for Guidance Software's Encase

  • Develop an EnScript that allows you to script EnCase from Python. (You can do this because EnScripts can run arbitrary DLLs. The EnScript calls the DLL. Each "return" from the DLL is a specific EnCase command to execute. The EnScript then re-enters the DLL.)

Volume/File System analysis

  • Analysis of inter snapshot changes in Windows Shadow Volumes
  • Modify SleuthKit's NTFS implementation to support NTFS encrypted files (EFS)
  • Extend SleuthKit's implementation of NTFS to cover Transaction NTFS (TxF) (see NTFS)
  • Physical layer access to flash storage (requires reverse-engineering proprietary APIs for flash USB and SSD storage.)
  • Add support to SleuthKit for ReFS.

Error Rates

  • Develop improved techniques for identifying encrypted data. (It's especially important to distinguish encrypted data from compressed data).
  • Quantify the error rate of different forensic tools and processes. Are these rates theoretical or implementation dependent? What is the interaction of the error rates and the Daubert standard?

Research Areas

These are research areas that could easily grow into a PhD thesis.

  • General-purpose detection of:
    • Stegnography
    • Sanitization attempts
    • Evidence Falsification (perhaps through inconsistency in file system allocations, application data allocation, and log file analysis.
  • Visualization of data/information in digital forensic context
  • SWOT of current visualization techniques in forensic tools; improvements; feasibility of 3D representation;

See Also