Thursday, June 01, 2006

Digital photo and cellphone forensics

It's amazing how much information is stored in a photo taken on a modern camera. For example, see how much info is on the Flickr More details page that is linked from this photo I took of a sea urchin yesterday. Even info about me -- what time I toook the photo. It all depends on the EXIF (Exchangeable Image File) data.

And of course, Flickr can tell you all that my camera knows, including what time I uploaded it to Flickr, unless I turn off that function, which doesn't bother me and ... never ... will (gulp!).

The forensic applications alone are fascinating, and make it easier for Perry Mason to fix the time of my crime than by measuring the shadow lengths. Aha! says Perry Mason. You told your boss you were sick, but you were on the beach! (Actually, I haven't been well and have cut down on my workload and taken a little beach therapy, but will Perry believe this? What about Della Street? She's always pretty nosey. And now you even know how long it is since I've seen a lawyer TV show.) Then there are issues of privacy.

This article on digital photo forensics is sort of interesting; the cellphone forensics kit perhaps moreso.

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