The Scientific Working Group on Digital Evidence (SWGDE) brings together organizations
actively engaged in the field of digital and multimedia evidence to foster communication
and cooperation as well as to ensure quality and consistency within the forensic
If these are your interests, we would like to welcome you to our site. We hope you will find
the information found within to be of benefit.
Mary Horvath, Chair Federal Bureau of Investigation
James Darnell, Vice Chair US Secret Service
There are no announcements at this time
SWGDE is actively
encouraging new membership! Learn about attending a meeting as a guest or
applying for membership.
SWGDE's most recent published documents are:
SWGDE Best Practices for Digital Forensic Video Analysis
SWGDE Establishing Confidence in Digital Forensic Results by Error Mitigation Analysis
SWGDE Minimum Requirements for Testing Tools used in Digital and Multimedia Forensics
SWGDE seeks feedback from the DME community on our drafts for public
SWGDE Technical Overview for Forensic Image Comparison
SWGDE Position on the Use of MD5 and SHA1 Hash Algorithms in Digital and Multimedia Forensics
SWGDE General Photography Guidelines for the Documentation of Evidence Items in the Laboratory
Myth of the
Digitally enhanced images should not be admissible.
Category: All DME Myths
Digitally enhanced images that reveal features that exist in the image but are not immediately apparent through visual examination have historically been found to be valid and admissible evidence in courtroom proceedings. Case law generally supports the admissibility of digitally enhanced images. It may be required that detailed explanation of the enhancement process first be provided. Frye and Daubert challenges to the use of this technology generally have been resolved in favor of admission of digitally enhanced images. A digital image or film photograph that has been altered or enhanced, which produces an output that does not accurately and fairly depict what was captured, does present admissibility issues. For example, if a blue car is the subject of a photograph and the image is changed to make the car appear red, such an image would certainly be subject to objection absent further explanation. On the other hand, an image that has been enhanced to reveal a fingerprint on a patterned background by removing the background pattern may be admissible because the nature of what the image depicts (a fingerprint) has not been changed. In this respect, it may prove helpful to recall that under rules of evidence an “original” of the data (which is what is created when a digital photograph is captured) is not restricted to the data itself, but “any printout or output readable by sight, shown to reflect the data accurately.” [Federal Rule of Evidence 1001(3)]