The Democratization of Video Evidence: Equipping Investigators with Modern Tools and Know-How

iNPUT-ACE webinar 28th january 2020Is your team prepared to handle a major investigation that involves multiple sources of Video Evidence? How long would it take you to gain insight from 12+ camera angles – each with a unique proprietary file format?

Join the webinar at 10 am PST (18:00 GMT), January 28th, for an in-depth discussion with industry expert Grant Fredericks as he shares details about his process from a complex case. Then there will be a deeper look at how these techniques are being implemented within large agencies.

You can register here

iNPUT-ACE Version 2.5.1 released

In September  iNPUT-ACE version 2.5 was launched which featured many user experience improvements, a completely overhauled method for decoding proprietary video files . Now iNPUT-ACE version 2.5.1 has been released with significant additions to the library of supported formats among other improvements.

iNPUT-ACE 2.5.1 Details

In this latest release, they have focused primarily on new file format support. iNPUT-ACE 2.5.1 adds 30+ new video formats allowing users to instantly drag-drop-play thousands of proprietary formats for more powerful and efficient investigations.

New Playable Formats with iNPUT-ACE 2.5.1 Include:

  • .PSF (from Digital Watchdog and others)
  • Additional Genetec .G64 /.G64x files
  • Several new .EXE formats
  • Several new H.265 formats

Improvements from iNPUT-ACE 2.5

In addition to the new File Formats, version 2.5.1 brings several fixes to the software. Here are a few changes you can expect in 2.5.1:

  • Fixed issue with Deinterlace node
  • Users can now manually set date/timestamp on any file to easily synchronize the data with other camera angles
  • Fixed issue with “include input filename” checkbox for Workflows using Subclips
  • Fixed issue with exporting saved Workflows

Find out more

If you would like to find out more or get a trial of the software that is already being used by multiple police departments in the US then please visit this page and fill out the form.

New Video Evidence Recovery and Analysis Training and Software

We are very pleased to be able to offer investigators and examiners some new software and training.

In addition to the DVR Examiner software we are now able to supply iNPUT-ACE software and the Cellebrite VERA course.

I will be putting up more information on the website soon but here are a few words about the software and training;

iNPUT-ACE and iNPUT-ACE | Lite software packages provide investigators with powerful tools to manage their digital video evidence. The two dynamic software programs work alongside each other to expedite any case that involves video evidence: from video playback, to clip extraction, enhancement, analysis, report writing, and much more.

Video Evidence Recovery and Analysis (VERA) Course (To be held in the UK)

The Video Evidence Recovery and Analysis Course (VERA) is five-day intermediate level course designed to introduce investigators, examiners and analysts to digital video technology and to meet the specific needs of the digital video examiner and analyst.

Students will learn proper methods to interrogate digital video evidence while receiving guided instruction throughout the process of recovering valuable evidence from video images. The course will also focus on specialized investigative techniques for the examination of video to explore issues relating to the use of force, speed estimation and identification. A variety of DVR, body-worn and in-car video sources will be examined in depth, testing data acquisition, file identification, image accuracy, video processing work flows and report writing.

If you would like to know more please get in touch.

The Basics of Reverse Engineering a DVR Filesystem

Reverse engineering the CCTV DVRThe Basics of Reverse Engineering a DVR Filesystem

At the heart of DVR Examiner is its ability to read a proprietary DVR filesystem and display and extract the data contained on the device. The ability to read these filesystems is not something that DVR Examiner does automatically – first someone from our Advanced Technical Services (ATS) team has to reverse engineer each filesystem implemented within the program. Only after completing this lengthy process can DVR Examiner recover the video evidence from surveillance DVRs. This post touches on some of the first steps our team takes to understand how each different filesystem works.

You can read the rest of the article on the developers website here  (opens in a new page)

Demux are the UK resellers of DVR Examiner if you would like a trial of the software or more information please visit this page

Feature Focus: DVR Examiner 2.5 Aspect Ratio

A new feature in DVR Examiner 2.5 helps review material that has been recorded at half the frame height by adjusting the aspect ratio for the preview.DVR Examiner 2.5 Aspectb Ratio

Important to note that this is intended to make reviewing easier and is not intended to confirm what the correct aspect ratio of the clip should be nor does it effect any files that are exported as these will be exported as they were recorded.

 

You can read the full article here

DVR Examiner Training

DVR Examiner User Certificate TrainingWe are very pleased to announce that there will be two DVR Examiner User Certification classes run in the UK in September 2018. Tutors will be from the software developer DME Forensics.

As a forensic investigator, you often face time-sensitive situations, where the accuracy of your evidence can make or break a case. By using DVR Examiner, you can save both time and money in these situations, but it helps to know how to use the tool effectively.

While DME Forensics put a lot of effort into making DVR Examiner simple and easy to use, it is still a very complex tool with a lot of powerful capabilities. Understanding the basics behind how DVR Examiner works, as well as the best practices and methodologies for the software can be critical in any investigation. With training, you can fully maximise DVR Examiner’s potential to assist in your case.

The User Certification Training guides users through the process of how DVR Examiner works, from DVR acquisition to complete video recovery and data output. We will go over all of the newest features of DVR Examiner, including the recovery of deleted (inaccessible) video. Students will explore how to make the most of DVR Examiner in real world scenarios, and how to defend your evidence in a court.

This training is especially important if you’re likely to testify to the work done with DVR Examiner. Being a certified user can be critical to DVR Examiner in court. Opposing counsel can be very diligent in ensuring the accuracy of evidence being entered, so being able to explain your methods, along with how DVR Examiner operates, can help you defend your evidence.

Location: Between Manchester and Liverpool.

Dates:

Course A – 8:00 Monday 24th September to 12:00 Wednesday 26th September

Course B – 13:00 Wednesday 26th September to 17:00 Friday 28th September

Certificate: When the student is present for all sessions and has passed all exams, they will receive a certificate of completion. When the attendee has actively taken part and was present for all sessions but failed to reach the required standard in the exams they will receive a certificate of participation.

More Details

For further details please email info@demux.co.uk

 

 

Training – VFSource User Training February 2018

Last week we were in Merseyside with Jeff Hunter of Salient Sciences training video examiners from various UK police forces. It was interesting to hear the different ways that video material is being processed and presented for prosecutions.

Providing training to video examiners

Jeff, who is the Principal Engineer at Salient Sciences, was particularly interested to speak with users to gain an insight into their real-world issues when working with multimedia evidence as he can influence the future development of the software to assist users to work more efficiently and effectively.

The course was attended by new and experienced users and the following comment highlights why training is so important…..

“I can say that I really enjoyed the course. It has re-ignited my interest in working with digital media.  I always knew the software could do more than I was using it for.  I can also say that the first job this morning has already seen my new skills in action.” Course attendee DP of Derbyshire Constabulary.

Both the VFSource and VFPro software provide examiners with the tools to work with proprietary and non-proprietary video and audio material.

If you would like more information about the VideoFOCUS software or future training events please complete the form on one of the product pages – VFSource or VFPro

Introducing the DVR Examiner Updater

The DVR Examiner Updater application allows you to continuously update your existing version of DVR Examiner with newly supported filesystems and improvements to existing filesystems as we finalize them. Basically, this new application brings you system compatibility with new DVRs, faster.

DVR Examiner - filesystem updater

There are a few ways to run the DVR Examiner Updater. If you are connected to the internet, you can click the link on the notification screen within DVR Examiner (pictured below). Otherwise, use the Windows start menu or launch the DVRExaminer_Updater.exe from the DVR Examiner installation folder (usually C:/Program Files/DVR Examiner).

DVR Examiner - version window

The process for updating your filesystem database version will depend on whether or not your work station is connected to the internet. If you have an internet connection, you can download and install Filesystem Database Updates (FDUs) from the DVR Examiner Updater. The Updater will allow you to download a new FDU from the portal and then install the new FDU immediately, so that DVR Examiner has the most current filesystem code to run from.

If your work station is not connected to the internet, you will have to use an internet connected computer to download the the latest FDU from the Support Portal and move the FDU to your work station (using a flash drive). After moving the FDU to your work station, you can select the “Add FDU” option in the top bar of the DVR Examiner Updater. You will then be able to install that FDU so DVR Examiner can have access to the latest filesystems and filesystem improvements.

Note: if a FDU does not appear in the grid of the Updater after being added, you can refresh the Updater Grid by clicking the “Check for Latest FDUs” button.

For more information on using the DVR Examiner Updater, check out this short training video (turn on your speakers).

We are excited to bring you this new feature of DVR Examiner to help bring you filesystem updates at a faster pace. If you encounter a filesystem that is not supported by DVR Examiner, be sure to submit a request to the technical support team at support@dmeforensics.com. Please include the name of the filesystem in your email.

Haven’t updated DVR Examiner to 2.2 yet? Click here to download the latest version and get access to continuous filesystem updates.

If you are involved in the recovery of video from CCTV DVRs and you are not yet a user of DVR Examiner you can obtain a free trial here and discover how much easier it is with a tool specifically built for the task.

Free 30 Day Trial

 

This post was originally posted on the DME Forensics blog.

Recovering Deleted DVR Video with DVR Examiner

DVR Examiner - recover deleted video from a CCTV DVRMany DVR users believe that by deleting video through the DVR interface, they are rendering video unrecoverable. Fortunately for forensic investigators, this is not the case. In most instances, when video is deleted through the DVR interface, only the index (or accessibility) to that video is being deleted. Assuming the video itself has not been overwritten, DVR Examiner may be able to recover it.

DVR Examiner can recover deleted DVR video by using the “inaccessible recovery” feature in DVR Examiner. What does “inaccessible” mean? In short, it refers to video that the DVR no longer knows how to find. A less precise term for this would be “deleted”, but there are several ways a video can become inaccessible other than deliberate deletion by the user. The most common way would be that the DVR was operating normally and simply needed more space for newer video.

When you initially scan a HDD, one of the first screens that comes up is the Supported System Identified screen. This screen displays all the features that DVR Examiner supports for this particular filesystem. If inaccessible recovery is supported, the “Inaccessible” icon (on the far left) will be highlighted in orange.

DVR Examiner - Inaccessible video recovery

DVR Examiner supports two inaccessible recovery types. The first type, simply called “Inaccessible”, refers to the ability of DVR Examiner to locate large segments of deleted video that the DVR no longer recognizes. For example, when a disk is reformatted or deleted, if no additional video is recorded, all the original video is largely intact but simply missing index entries. The second type, “Frame Level Inaccessible” refers to the ability of DVR Examiner to recover very small segments of video which may have been partially overwritten by newer video. This is a much more complex and complete recovery type – we’re often able to recover some video from weeks or months in the past that was never actually overwritten. Keep in mind that either recovery type will typically result in a slower scan process.

DME Forensics hope to be able to add inaccessible recovery to as many filesystems as possible. If you would like to request inaccessible recovery be added for a specific filesystem, you can do so by sending them an email at support@dmeforensics.com. Please include the name of the filesystem in your email.

Due to limitations within specific filesystems, inaccessible recovery will not always be able to be implemented within DVR Examiner. However, this typically does not prevent their Advanced Technical Services (ATS) team from being able to recover the data manually. If you have a specific case where inaccessible recovery is crucial, please contact DME Forensics to discuss potential options.

If you are involved in the recovery of video from CCTV DVRs and you are not yet a user of DVR Examiner you can obtain a free trial here and discover how much easier it is with a tool specifically built for the task.

Free 30 Day Trial

 

This post was originally posted on the DME Forensics blog.

 

Salient Sciences Video FOCUS release V7.x

VideoFOCUS version 7

With this latest release, Salient Sciences are introducing new features and updates to assist examiners to work efficiently with their AUDIO and VIDEO evidence.

If you have a current support contract please download the latest version from here

If you would like to know more and request a trial version of the software please visit this page.

 Reporting

VideoFOCUS 7.0 can now generate pdf report documents describing video and image items in a project.

A report can be created by selecting the desired media items and choosing the ‘view report’ item in the view menu. Alternatively individual image or video items can be reported on by using the ‘view report’ menu action from the session or still list popup menus. A report can also be created by selecting the option in the export media dialog. In this situation a report will be created that includes sections for each media item that is being exported.

VideoFOCUS will automatically generate a full ‘steps to reproduce’ section for each item in the report and will provide a basic summary of the properties of each item that is being reported. In addition to the automatically generated sections the user can also add item specific notes to each media item using the session or still property dialog and these notes will be included in the report. The VideoFOCUS cases now offer properties than can be set, including agency and examiner names, case number and title and an overall notes section and these properties will also be used in the composition of the report.

Macros (VFPro only)

VideoFOCUS now supports the concept of macros. Macros are a way to apply a set of actions taken on one piece of media to other similar media, without having to repeat the actions in the user interface. Typically this might be used to apply similar processing to related videos that are determined to require the same sequence of modifications,filtering etc in every case.

There is no specific process to define the steps in a macro. All that is required is to select an item that is the product of processing and use the right click menu ‘copy macro starting at’. When this is menu option is selected VideoFOCUS will offer the various points in the processing history of the item as starting point for the macro action. The macro processing include all steps between that point and an the final step producing the selected media item

Once copied the macro can be applied to other items by simply selecting them and using the ‘apply macro’ popup action. When applied the macro application will produce a new item that are the macro steps applied to that item. It is also possible to apply a macro to a set of selected items as a single action. In his case a result will be created for each selected item.

Macro actions are full described in the report in terms of the original actions that compose the steps of the macro and then application of the macro. Macros of macros are also supported.

Under certain circumstances the application of a macro can lead to invalid output. Most commonly this will be when references are made to times or views that do not exist in the target media. VideoFOCUS is designed to detect such situations and will advise the user that the macro cannot be applied.

Unified Export

VideoFOCUS now has a single export dialog that supports the simultaneous export of images, video and audio. The items that are export depends on which export menu is used and what is selected. When the export is invoked from the session list popup the export is restricted to selected items in that list. Similarly when the export is invoked from the stills area popup the export is limited to selected items in that list.

If however the export is invoked from the main file menu the export will included all selected items in both the session and stills areas. When combined with the report option, this allows for a production of a single report including all items that a user may wish to export from VideoFOCUS. When there is a mixed set of media types in the export dialog the video, images and audio tabs provide for control over any configurable aspects of each specific type.

Other Changes

Item Labeling and Tooltips

VideoFOCUS has been updated to provide a more consistent methodology for the labeling of media items created by filters, modification, edits etc. There is now also a tooltip associated with each media item offering a short description of the process step that was used to create the item. The tooltip includes the label name of the item’s source to aid in locating the source item

Project Time Zone

Projects can now use timezone that is distinct from the system or default VideoFOCUS time zone. The time zone choice is available via the File menu item ‘project properties’. The timezone choice controls the presentation of times in both the interface and in and reports associated with items in the project.

UPDATE THE SOFTWARE

If you have a current support contract please download the latest version from here

If you would like to know more and request a trial version of the software please visit this page.