Difference between pages "Tools:Visualization" and "Research Topics"

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Although not strictly for forensic purposes, '''visualization tools''' such as the ones discussed here can be very useful for visualizing large data sets. As forensic practitioners need to process more and more data, it is likely that some of the techniques implemented by these tools will need to be adopted.
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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.
  
== Open Source ==
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Many of these would make a nice master's project.
=== Visualization Toolkits and Libraries ===
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* [http://csbi.sourceforge.net/index.html Graph Interface Library (GINY)] - Java
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* [http://www.gravisto.org/ Gravisto: Graph Visualization Toolkit] - An editor and toolkit for developing graph visualization algorithms.
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*  [http://hypergraph.sourceforge.net/ HyperGraph] - Hyperbolic trees, in Java. Check out the home page. Try clicking on the logo...
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* [http://ivtk.sourceforge.net/ InfoViz Toolkit] - Java, originally developed at [[INRA]].
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* [https://jdigraph.dev.java.net/ Jdigrah] - Java Directed Graphs.
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* [http://jgrapht.sourceforge.net/ JGraphT] - A Java visualization kit designed to be simple and extensible.
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* [http://www.softwaresecretweapons.com/jspwiki/Wiki.jsp?page=LinguineMaps Linguine Maps] - An open-source Java-based system for visualizing software call maps.
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* [http://prefuse.sourceforge.net/ Perfuse] - A Java-based toolkit for building interactive information visualization applications
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* [http://www.gnu.frb.br:8080/rox Rox Graph Theory Framework] - An open-source plug-in framework for graph theory visualization.
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* [http://touchgraph.sourceforge.net/ TouchGraph] - Library for building graph-based interfaces.
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* [http://www.ssec.wisc.edu/~billh/visad.html#intro VisAD] - A Java component library for interactive and collaborative visualization.
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* [http://public.kitware.com/VTK/ The Visualization Toolkit] - C++ multi-platform with interfaces available for Tcl/Tk, Java and Python. Professional support provided by [http://www.kitware.com/ Kitware].
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* [http://zvtm.sourceforge.net/index.html Zoomable Visual Transformation Machine] - Java. Originally started at Xerox Research Europe.
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* [http://processing.org/ Processing.org] - A new language for doing graphics and visualization.
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===Graph Drawing Applications===
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=Programming/Engineering Projects=
* [http://www.graphviz.org/ Graphviz] - Originally developed by the [http://public.research.att.com/areas/visualization/ AT&T Information Visualization Gorup], designed for drawing connected graphs of nodes and edges. Neato is a similar system but does layout based on a spring model. Can produce output as [[PostScript]], [[PNG]], [[GIF]], or as an annotated graph file with the locations of all of the objects — ideal for drawing in a GUI. Runs from the command line on [[Unix]], [[Windows]] and [[Mac]], although there is also a [http://www.pixelglow.com/graphviz/ MacOS GUI version].
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* [http://graphexploration.cond.org/ Guess: The Graph Exploration System] - Originally developed at HP, this is a large Jython/Java-based system that you can use for building your own applications. Distributed under GPL.
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* [http://sourceforge.net/projects/ivc/ InfoVis Cyberinfrastructure] - Another graph drawing system written in Java.
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* [http://jung.sourceforge.net/ Java Universal Network/Graph Framework (JUNG)] - Graphing, [[data mining]], [[social network]] analysis, and other stuff.
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* [http://www.andrew.cmu.edu/user/krack/krackplot.shtml Krackplot] - "KrackPlot is a program for network visualization designed for social network analysts."
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* [http://bioinformatics.icmb.utexas.edu/lgl/ Large Graph Layout (LGL)] - A bioinformatics system from University of Texas. They really mean Large.
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* [http://www.sfu.ca/~richards/Multinet/Pages/multinet.htm MultiNet] - A data analysis package for drawing conventional data and graph data.
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* [http://www.analytictech.com/netdraw.htm NetDraw] - "a free program written by Steve Borgatti for visualizing both 1-mode and 2-mode social network data."
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* [http://web.mit.edu/bshi/Public/nv2d/ NetVis 2D] - Another graph visualization and layout tool written in Java.
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* [http://www.opendx.org/ OpenDX] - Based on [[IBM]]'s Visualization Data Explorer, runs on [[Unix]]/X11/Motif.
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* [http://vlado.fmf.uni-lj.si/pub/networks/pajek/ Pajek] - Windows program for drawing large networks.
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* [http://sourceforge.net/projects/sonia/ Social Network Image Animator (SoNIA)] - Originally developed at Stanford. Written in Java. Makes movies.
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* [http://www.informatik.uni-bremen.de/uDrawGraph/en/uDrawGraph/uDrawGraph.html uDrawGraph]
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* [http://www.wilmascope.org/ WilmaScope] - Real-time animations of dynamic graph structures. Written in Java. Sophisticated force model with strings and attraction.
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* [http://www.caida.org/tools/visualization/walrus/ Walrus] - A 3-d graph network exploration tool. Employs 3D hyperbolic displays and layout based on a user-supplied spanning tree.
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== Geographical Drawing Programs ==
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==Small-Sized Programming Projects==
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* Modify [[bulk_extractor]] so that it can directly acquire a raw device under Windows. This requires replacing the current ''open'' function call with a ''CreateFile'' function call and using windows file handles.
 +
* Rewrite SleuthKit '''sorter''' in C++ to make it faster and more flexible.
  
* [http://openmap.bbn.com/ OpenMap] -- From [[BBN]].
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==Medium-Sized Programming Projects==
 +
* Create a program that visualizes the contents of a file, sort of like hexedit, but with other features:
 +
** Automatically pull out the strings
 +
** Show histogram
 +
** Detect crypto and/or stenography.
 +
* Extend [[fiwalk]] to report the NTFS alternative data streams.
 +
* 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.
 +
* 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.
  
== Commercial Tools ==
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==Big Programming/System Projects==
 +
Most of these are large systems that could be split up into several small projects.
 +
===Carvers===
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Develop a new carver with a plug-in architecture and support for fragment reassembly carving. Take a look at:
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* [[Carver 2.0 Planning Page]]
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* ([mailto:rainer.poisel@gmail.com Rainer Poisel']) [https://github.com/rpoisel/mmc Multimedia File Carver], which allows for the reassembly of multimedia fragmented files.
  
* [http://www.aisee.com/ aiSee Graph Layout Software] - Supports 15 layout algorithms, recursive graph nesting, and easy printing. Runs on [[Windows]], [[Linux]], [[Solaris]], [[NetBSD]], and [[MacOS]]. 30-day trial and free registered versions available. Academic pricing available.
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===Correlation Engine===
* [http://www.geomantics.com/ Geomantics] - Geographical, Visualization and Graphics software. Runs on [[Windows]].
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* Logfile correlation
* [http://www.kylebank.com/ Graphis 2D and 3D graphing software] - Runs on [[Windows]]. Free 30-day evaluation copy available.
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* Document identity identification
* [http://www.openviz.com/ OpenViz] and [http://www.powerviz.com/ PowerViz] - Both from Advanced Visual Systems, super high-end visualization toolkits. $$$$
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* Correlation between stored data and intercept data
* [http://www.tomsawyer.com/ Tom Sawyer Software] Analysis, Visualizaiton, and Layout programs. - Heavy support for drawing graphs. Beautiful gallery. ActiveX, Java, C++ and .NET editions.
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* Online Social Network Analysis
* [http://www.netminer.com/ NetMiner] - "One of the most comprehensive and usable software tools for Social Network Analysis in the world." Runs on Winodws, with a Linux version under development. $35 for "Express" student version, $250 for "Professional" student version, $950 for "Normal" "Professional" version.
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* [http://www.analytictech.com/ucinet.htm UCINET] - A comprehensive package for the analysis of social network data as well as other 1-mode and 2-mode data.
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= Other Resources =
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===Data Snarfing===
 +
* 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
  
; [http://www.palgrave-journals.com/ivs/index.html Information Visualization Journal]
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===Anti-Frensics Detection===
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A pluggable rule-based system that can detect the residual data or other remnants of running a variety of anti-forensics software
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=== Timeline analysis ===
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* Mapping differences and similarities in multiple versions of a system, e.g. those created by [[Windows Shadow Volumes]] but not limited to
 +
* Write a new timeline viewer that supports Logfile fusion (with offsets) and provides the ability to view the logfile in the frequency domain.
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===Imaging Disk Farms===
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How do you image an active file system?
 +
===Audit===
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How do we improve Audit capabilities?
  
; [http://www-static.cc.gatech.edu/gvu/ii/resources/infovis.html GVU's Information Visualization Resources link farm]
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=Reverse-Engineering Projects=
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== Application analysis ==
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* Reverse the on-disk structure of the [[Extensible Storage Engine (ESE) Database File (EDB) format]] to learn:
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** Fill in the missing information about older ESE databases
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** Exchange EDB (MAPI database), STM
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** Active Directory (Active Directory working document available on request)
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* Reverse the on-disk structure of the Lotus [[Notes Storage Facility (NSF)]]
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* Reverse the on-disk structure of Microsoft SQL Server databases
  
; [http://www.msi.umn.edu/user_support/scivis/scivis-list.html Scientific Visualization at the Supercomputing Institute]
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== Volume/File System analysis ==
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* Analysis of inter snapshot changes in [[Windows Shadow Volumes]]
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* Add support to SleuthKit for [[FAT|eXFAT]], Microsoft's new FAT file system.
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* Add support to SleuthKit for [[Resilient File System (ReFS)|ReFS]].
 +
* Modify SleuthKit's NTFS implementation to support NTFS encrypted files (EFS)
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* Extend SleuthKit's implementation of NTFS to cover Transaction NTFS (TxF) (see [[NTFS]])
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* Physical layer access to flash storage (requires reverse-engineering proprietary APIs for flash USB and SSD storage.)
  
; [http://directory.google.com/Top/Science/Math/Combinatorics/Software/Graph_Drawing/ Google Directory of Graph Drawing Software]
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==EnCase Enhancement==
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* 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.)
  
; [http://rw4.cs.uni-sb.de/~diehl/softvis/seminar/index.php?goto=seminar ACM Symposium on Software Visualization]
 
: May give you some ideas.
 
  
; [http://directory.fsf.org/science/visual/ GNU Free Software directory of scientific visualization software]
 
  
; [http://www.cs.brown.edu/people/rt/gd.html Roberto Tamassia's resources on Graph Drawing]
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=Research Projects=
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==Medium-Sized Research Projects==
 +
* Develop an image processing program that can reliably detect screen shots. (Screen shots are useful to find on a hard drive because they can imply the presence of a remote control or surveillance program.)
 +
* 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?
  
; [http://www.manageability.org/blog/stuff/open-source-graph-network-visualization-in-java/view Open Source Graph Network Visualization in Java]
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==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=
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* [http://itsecurity.uiowa.edu/securityday/documents/guan.pdf Digital Forensics: Research Challenges and Open Problems, Dr. Yong Guan, Iowa State University, Dec. 4, 2007]
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__NOTOC__
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[[Category:Research]]

Revision as of 20:07, 14 October 2012

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

Small-Sized Programming Projects

  • Modify bulk_extractor so that it can directly acquire a raw device under Windows. This requires replacing the current open function call with a CreateFile function call and using windows file handles.
  • Rewrite SleuthKit sorter in C++ to make it faster and more flexible.

Medium-Sized Programming Projects

  • Create a program that visualizes the contents of a file, sort of like hexedit, but with other features:
    • Automatically pull out the strings
    • Show histogram
    • Detect crypto and/or stenography.
  • Extend fiwalk to report the NTFS alternative data streams.
  • 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.
  • 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.

Big Programming/System Projects

Most of these are large systems that could be split up into several small projects.

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

  • 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

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

Timeline analysis

  • Mapping differences and similarities in multiple versions of a system, e.g. those created by Windows Shadow Volumes but not limited to
  • Write a new timeline viewer that supports Logfile fusion (with offsets) and provides the ability to view the logfile in the frequency domain.

Imaging Disk Farms

How do you image an active file system?

Audit

How do we improve Audit capabilities?

Reverse-Engineering Projects

Application analysis

Volume/File System analysis

  • Analysis of inter snapshot changes in Windows Shadow Volumes
  • Add support to SleuthKit for eXFAT, Microsoft's new FAT file system.
  • Add support to SleuthKit for ReFS.
  • 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.)

EnCase Enhancement

  • 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.)


Research Projects

Medium-Sized Research Projects

  • Develop an image processing program that can reliably detect screen shots. (Screen shots are useful to find on a hard drive because they can imply the presence of a remote control or surveillance program.)
  • 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