According to a recent article in the Detroit Free Press, law enforcement agencies across the U.S. are turning to cell phone forensics for help in criminal investigations and the data they rely on to catch crooks could easily be applied in divorce cases to nabbing cheating spouses or getting your soon-to-be ex on the hook for perjury.
A former hacker named Jonathan Zdziarski has written a how-to manual on retrieving data from iPhones, and has been hired by several law enforcement agencies to teach their officers how to gather data for evidence in criminal cases.
Zdziarski says he focused on the iPhone because of its popularity and because it is more like a computer than a phone. The iPhone automatically stores reams of information about its owners use history, including keystroke data for texts and emails and screenshots of emails the user thinks have been deleted.
Photos taken by an iPhone and posted online can tell investigators exactly what time and where the photo was taken as well as the exact phone that took the photo. Since many iPhone owners use apps that are integrated with the iPhone’s GPS, just about every move an iPhone user makes can be retrieved from the database.
The courts have yet to fully weigh in on the privacy issue with cell phones, although there is an Ohio case on appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court seeking to bar a warrantless search of cell phone data.
Using social media sites like Facebook as evidence in divorce cases has exploded in just the past year; can the use of iPhone data be far behind?