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ERNW White Paper 59

Email Communication Visualization in (forensic) incident analysis

Communication between people counts to the most important information of today’s business. As a result, in case of forensic investigations or incident analyses in big companies, analysis of communication data in general and especially email, as the still most widely used business communication platform with an immense and still growing volume, is a typical task in digital forensics/incident analysis. One of the challenges is to identify the relevant communication partners and structures in the suspects surrounding as quickly as possible in order to react appropriately and identify further targets of evaluation. Due to the amount of emails in typical inboxes, reading through all the mails renders impractical. Therefore, forensic investigators need tools that support them in quickly receiving an impression of a suspect’s email communication, identifying the relevant communication partners, and realizing communication patterns in single or even multiple email accounts. We introduce an open source forensic email analysis tool that provides exactly this by means of a responsive and interactive graph visualization of email data supported by statistical information.