Crime Scene Investigation of GPS Data in Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs)

Forensic Focus - Articles

by Chirath De Alwis

The invention of the Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV), also known as the drone, has the potential to address some crucial issues in society. Commercial aerial surveillance, oil/gas/mineral exploration, and disaster relief are some of them [1]. Considering the increasingly popular use of drones, it is evident that there is potential for them to be used in crimes. This demands forensics investigation.

When it comes to analysis of drone artifacts, GPS data plays a huge role. It is vital to answer to questions like where was this drone flying? From where this drone was sent? This article describes evidence acquisition from drones and extraction of GPS information from drone artifacts.

Drone Structure

To operate a drone requires the aircraft, a mobile device, battery, camera, radio controller, and/or Wi-Fi range extender (some models do connect using Wi-Fi). The structure of a drone can be vary based on the…

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