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Essay: Cyber crimes

Essay details:

  • Subject area(s): Information technology essays
  • Reading time: 3 minutes
  • Price: Free download
  • Published: November 14, 2017*
  • File format: Text
  • Words: 649 (approx)
  • Number of pages: 3 (approx)
  • Cyber crimes
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With the widespread use of the Internet, the cyber crimes have also increased. As per the statistics in Verizon (2016), organisations face cyber threats not only from the outsider  but also from the person within the organisation. The motives of the cyber attacks can be

financial, espionage, grudge, and fun. The Microsoft Windows is the most popular

operating system due to its user friendly GUI and ease of use, this has caused more

frequent attacks on it. The attacker of the computer system performs various activities on

it such as software installation, device connections, putting a malicious code, accessing

documents and programs, network connections. The digital forensic investigation is

performed to locate and extract the digital evidence of the user activities on the system.

The registry is a wealth of information for both the administrator and the forensic

investigator. As per the Microsoft (2013), the registry is a hierarchical database, which

can be described as a central repository for configuration data or as a configuration

database. Beside from being a central place to store settings, the registry by its very

nature allows complex relationships among different parts of Windows, applications, and

the user interface. A comparative study of some of the features introduced in the

subsequent version of the Windows operating system and their associated keys in the

registry are listed in Table 1.

The malicious insider within an organisation might steal the information for personal

gain or to benefit another organisation, damage the computer system for the personal

vendetta. As per Ganesh and Sambit (2014), malicious insiders can be current or former

employees, contractors or business partners that gain access to an organisations network,

system or data and release this information without permission by the organisation. The

Windows Registry maintains the digital evidence of the various user activities on the

system. By performing the digital forensic investigation of the registry, the potential

evidence of the crime, the timing of the crime is obtained. On analysing this evidence, the

suspect is identified. But the process of searching the registry through regedit.exe or

regedit32.exe consumes lots of time since the examiner is needed to search the entire

registry in order to find out the meaningful forensic information. As discussed by Carvey

(2005), knowing what information is available and where the information can be found

can lead the investigator to develop a more comprehensive picture of the case. Therefore,

there is the need of an evidence collection and analysis methodology which can extract

the required information from the Windows registry along with the timeline and provide

them to the forensic examiner in a presentable manner. The information thus extracted is

helpful in identifying the malicious insider. The expert user on accessing the system may

modify or delete the information in the registry to avoid from being caught this raises the

need to identify if any changes to the registry has been caused by the user. A study on the

available existing tools which extract forensic data from the registry has been performed.

A new standalone, portable tool has been proposed which overcomes the limitations in

the existing tools. The paper contributes towards a framework for the proposed tool to

identify the malicious activity of the user on the system. The framework includes the

improved evidence collection and analysis methodology to extract and analysis the digital

evidence about the potential malicious insider from the registry. This paper is organised

as follows: a study of the existing research and the tools which extract the forensic

information’s from the registry has been performed in Section 2. A new evidence

collection and analysis methodology implemented in the proposed tool to extract forensic

evidence from the registry is discussed in Section 3.

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