Wearable Device Data for Criminal Investigation

  • Sarah Mcnary
  • Aaron HunterEmail author
Conference paper
Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNCS, volume 11342)


Wearable devices collect and share data through social networks accessed by a smartphone. We can therefore view the smartphone carried by a criminal suspect as a central repository of information that may be useful in a criminal investigation. But it is not clear how this information can be used to deduce conclusive, legally admissible evidence. The challenges here are not only technological, but practical. In this paper, we discuss the challenges faced when we try to abstract criminal data from wearable devices. We also present a case study involving a wearable fitness tracker. In particular, we try to determine if a phone synced with a fitness tracker can provide evidence related to the execution of a violent act. While the approach presented here opens up a new area for investigators to look for evidence, our results suggest that it can actually be difficult to obtain concrete digital evidence in this manner.


Wearable devices Forensic investigation Information retrieval Experimental methods Information security 


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of Computing and Academic StudiesBritish Columbia Institute of TechnologyBurnabyCanada

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