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International police make arrests based on mobile forensics

Cellebrite : 20 April, 2015  (Application Story)
Interpol has been using Mobile Forensic tools from Cellebrite to access crucial evidence used for the arrests of 58 people
International police make arrests based on mobile forensics

Cellebrite provided its Universal Forensic Extraction Device (UFED) units to the INTERPOL Digital Crime Centre (IDCC), to assist in retrieving evidence for the prosecution of suspects involved in a global online ‘sextortion’ scam.

In the first operation of its kind, codenamed Strikeback, a series of raids carried out in the Philippines by the Philippines National Police (PNP) which resulted in the arrest of 58 individuals and the seizure of 250 electronic devices, including many mobile phones. A second phase of the operation led to the arrest of a further eight suspects.

Cellebrite's UFED was the main tool used to extract and analyse mobile data in order to gather evidence for the prosecution of the 'sextortion' criminals.

Levy Lozada, Chief of the PNP's Digital Forensic  Laboratory, and part of the recently formed Anti-Cybercrime Group, commented on the UFED's central role in the investigation: "The UFED was the primary tool used by PNP to perform extractions and analysis of data from mobile devices. We are very satisfied with the equipment since it's easy to use and effectively pulls out admissible evidence. Our digital forensic laboratories use it not only for cybercrime, but for other types of crimes where a mobile device may have been used to carry out illicit criminal activity."

Sanjay Virmani, Director of the IDCC, also expressed his appreciation for Cellebrite's involvement in Operation Strikeback: “The arrests were just one part of the investigation. Equally as important is ensuring that evidence is properly recovered and accessed, and the support and expertise provided by Cellebrite was an important factor in this part of the process.”

The UFED units provided to the IDCC were part of Cellebrite’s support for the INTERPOL Global Complex for Innovation (IGCI) in Singapore to support the Organization’s 190 member countries in fight digital crime, identify criminals and support capacity building through innovative training.

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