With the introduction of the Internet of Things (IoT), the world of technology has seen progress like never before. The smart devices we depend on in our daily lives are all part of IoT. However, with every good thing comes risks. All IoT applications depend on network connectivity and large amounts of data transfer, which makes them vulnerable to malicious attacks. Cybersecurity threats are high and therefore, we should be aware of the means to identify and mitigate such risks. This is where IoT forensics comes into the picture.
What Is IoT Forensics?
Just like the investigation of a regular crime scene, IoT forensics deals with the investigation of a cybercrime related to IoT. It involves the application of various techniques for identification, preservation, analysis, and presentation of digital evidence after the occurrence of the crime.
Apart from mobiles, tablets, sensors, and other smart IoT devices, cloud computing is also a part of IoT. Cloud computing technologies are responsible for storing the huge datasets of IoT and providing various services. IoT is greatly dependent on the cloud for its capacity, scalability, and convenience of use. Therefore, cloud data breaches are also part of crimes related to IoT forensics.
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What Is the Difference Between Digital and IoT Forensics?
Digital forensics is a wide area that includes recognizing, parsing, and exhibiting digital evidence from several sources after a cyberattack. The evidence gathered can be utilized in a court of law for further legal proceedings. It involves the examination of all devices that are capable of storing data in a digital format. Earlier known as computer forensics, digital forensics has now expanded to include multiple sub-branches for retrieving digital evidence from both volatile and non-volatile memory. The field of digital forensics can be categorized into the following:
- Network forensics: It involves investigating and analysis of the network traffic.
- Disk forensics: It involves looking through storage devices for all kinds of files.
- Email forensics: All emails, contacts, and calendar events are thoroughly searched in this type of forensics.
- Database forensics: It includes the examination of all databases and their metadata.
- Malware forensics: It involves identifying malicious items in a device or network. Malware attacks are one of the most common cyberattacks.
- Mobile device forensics: It involves the analysis of all content found on mobile devices.
- Computer forensics: It involves the investigation of computers only.
Cyber forensics or digital forensics is made possible with the help of multiple tools that have been designed specifically for investigating certain digital mediums. Some common cyber forensics tools are Wireshark, Forensic Investigator, Autopsy, and Nmap.
IoT forensics is a sub-part of digital forensics that focuses on crimes related to IoT and its sub-domains only. It is much more complex and multifaceted as compared to digital forensics. Unlike digital forensics, there are no specific tools or techniques to identify the sources of digital evidence when it comes to IoT devices. Most data is stored remotely in the cloud, which makes retrieval of digital evidence challenging. IoT forensics is still facing multiple hurdles due to the large assortment of devices, scattered data, and geographical restrictions associated with cloud data centers. Cloud data is also subject to alteration, which can be a significant concern when investigating a crime.
How to Extract and Parse Traces from IoT Devices
The extraction and analysis of evidence are still at their early stages in IoT forensics. Currently, the common sources of assembling digital evidence are the intelligent devices and sensors, the communicators between these devices and the outer world, cloud storage, and mobile network providers.
Dive into IoT Forensics with CHFI
Collecting and analyzing traces from IoT devices is a difficult task and can be done only by certified professionals. Enter Computer Hacking Forensic Investigation (CHFI), a digital forensics program that is focused on certifying individuals who can identify different hacking attacks and extract sufficient digital evidence to report the attack. The certification opens the gates for you to work in digital forensics or even specialized IoT forensics.
Certified investigators are also responsible for discovering new modes of examination for cybercrime traces. Addressing this need, CHFI has been outlined specifically to promote skills in tracking the criminal’s footprints and gathering enough digital evidence for law proceedings. For more information, visit https://www.eccouncil.org/programs/computer-hacking-forensic-investigator-chfi/