Meet Magnet ACQUIRE, a free software solution that enables digital forensic examiners to quickly and easily acquire forensic images of any iOS or Android device, hard drives, and removable media.
1) The New Realities of Smartphone Forensics
Based on the direction Apple and Google are headed with recent and forthcoming versions of their operating systems, encryption of memory on smartphones is becoming a standard security feature. This means that physical images will become increasingly challenging to acquire no matter what tool you are using.
8 out of 10 mobile examinations involve iOS or Android powered smartphones/tablets
When we consider the recent news regarding the San Bernardino case and the iPhone, it’s becoming apparent that you will continue to encounter circumstances where either, you will be unable to acquire an image of a smartphone or there will be significant limitations on the scope of content/data that can actually be extracted, regardless of the mobile forensics tools that you are using.
2) A Logical Approach to Acquisition
The best acquisition technique in any given circumstance will always be dependent on the same factors: OS version, device make and model, and wireless carrier configuration. We’re clearly seeing that the probability of obtaining a physical image of a smartphone is in decline. However, if the device is unlocked or you can obtain the password, acquiring a logical image is still very much achievable. Across the board logical acquisition methods that use documented OS backup processes and commands are becoming the most viable and consistent options for extracting data from smartphones.
Magnet ACQUIRE’s Quick Extraction uses a combination of two acquisition methods in a single extraction process, to produce one logical image with more content/data than can be obtained by either method on its own. The result is a consistent extraction of the majority of the highest value of content/data from all iOS and Android devices.
Quick Extraction is a great way to start off a smartphone examination, knowing that it’s a fast and consistent way to get an image. Performing this type of extraction can help you get to the data faster and gives you enough information to assess the next steps of your examination. The logical image extracted using this method can be easily analyzed by Magnet IEF, UFED, or really any digital forensic tool.
If the data recovered proves to be interesting and you feel the effort to obtain a physical image is warranted, you can choose to use any viable method to acquire a physical image (JTAG, Chip-off, Magnet ACQUIRE Full Extraction, UFED, XRY etc.) , which may reveal additional evidence from unallocated space.
3) Stretch Your Budget Further with Free Tools
Install Magnet ACQUIRE on every forensic workstation in your lab. It’s a free way to equip examiners with a powerful tool that will help them get the job done.
Let’s face it, some of the other mobile forensic tools are very expensive to buy and maintain. Using Magnet ACQUIRE as your primary smartphone acquisition tool will enable you to reduce the quantity of licenses that you need to buy and maintain of these other tools.
It simply doesn’t makes sense to spend money on tools that perform the same tasks that other tools can perform for free.
4) Bringing a New Level of Clarity to Documentation and Activity Logging
Traditionally, the techniques used to acquire images of mobile devices have been secrets that are “hidden behind the curtains” of mobile forensics tools. This lack of transparency only makes it more difficult for examiners to explain their findings.
Magnet ACQUIRE documents its acquisition methods and allows you to understand which acquisition methods were used and how data was extracted from each smartphone. Examiners get clear step-by-step documentation that will help them better explain the results of their investigations with stakeholders and in court.
5) Plays Well with Others
While we believe that we’re developing great smartphone forensics tools that will help you do your job better than ever, we also want to ensure you’re building a comprehensive case with the right tools.
We design our software so that you can use it in combination with the other tools in your toolkit, such as Cellebrite UFED or EnCase. Magnet ACQUIRE is a free solution for you to use in conjunction with any analysis tools you have at your disposal or your preferred analysis tools.