Andrew Marrington (Zayed University)
Ibrahim Baggili (University of New Haven)
George Mohay
Andrew Clark

Abstract

The construction of timelines of computer activity is a part of many digital investigations. These timelines of events are composed of traces of historical activity drawn from system logs and potentially from evidence of events found in the computer file system. A potential problem with the use of such information is that some of it may be inconsistent and contradictory thus compromising its value. This work introduces a software tool (CAT Detect) for the detection of inconsistency within timelines of computer activity. We examine the impact of deliberate tampering through experiments conducted with our prototype software tool. Based on the results of these experiments, we discuss techniques which can be employed to deal with such temporal inconsistencies