2023 Review 2024 Predictions

Written by Amber Schroader

January 5, 2024


Welcome to the first blog post of 2024 of Forensic impact. I’m Amber Schroader. I’m the one who maintains this blog. It’s one of those that I have gone up and down about getting stuff written because there’s always piles of research that you can see probably behind me right now.

There are also piles of dogs right behind me. But one of the things I’m going to do in 2024 is I’m going to try to put some of this in a quick video for you. Quick watch, quick learn. You never know. So today I’m going to talk about what our 2023 saw in shifts and what we might see in 2024 when it comes to digital investigations.

So, for me, the best part of 2023 is that it’s over. It was not a fantastic year because it seemed like the same old drum got beat all year, and we had a lot of different changes happen as well in the privacy side of things. So when that happened, some of our digital evidence and evidence, we would want in an investigation shifted and changed as well.

So that can be a positive and a negative for us. But it was one of my low lights of 2023. Some of the highlights of 2023, however, um, are things like the metaverse. And I know everyone’s like, hey, I did not join that. Different things like that. But the fact that we have broken into the realm where we have a virtual world that people can exist in, I have hung out in all of those different things.

We know that our digital frontier is changing beyond just what is happening in real life to what is happening in virtual life. And we saw both of the primary manufacturers of headsets associated with, uh, the virtual world really kind of go up to the next level, because now we’re getting AR and VR together, which is outstanding.

We are going to see more and more digital artifacts coming out of these two places as we go into 2024. And I’m excited to discover those and share them with you because the world is there and it’s waiting for us. Very excited about what’s happening in the virtual world.

Our two worlds are kind of coming together in that aspect. Two other worlds that have come together from 2023 that we’re going to see more growth happen in 2024 are the world of digital forensics and OSINT, our friendly cousins coming together where we’re getting more verified data needed in the OSINT side of things, and digital forensics needing to see outside of the scope of static data and going out into the live environment to verify it.

I think we’re going to see more of this becoming a hotspot for us in digital investigations. I know those of us at Paraben, we’re focusing on that inside of e three to make sure that you can do every type of this 360 degrees that we haven’t always looked at in digital investigations kind of coming together.

So I’m excited for that to happen in 2024 as something that started to emerge out in 2023. Other things to see in 2024. Of course, IoT, if you can get into the details of the devices back there, I call this the TEMU effect, because TEMU offering really inexpensive IoT electronics to the United States market and many other markets, is making an impact on where our digital data is going to be, and we’re going to see more of those starting to come out.

When I can buy a new camera or a new doorbell, and it’s going to cost me five or $10, people who never experimented with IoT before now have it at such an affordable price that they’re looking to integrate this into their lives. And once you stop, you don’t go back.

You just can’t. You’re getting used to it. So you’re like, I have to keep this going. Other things that we’re going to see as a big change in 2024 is I think we’re going to see some workflow changes within the different labs and organizations. Some of that is caused by that ocent, deeper, coming together side of things.

The other side of it is the fact that we’ve had some big changes happen to tools in the digital investigation space, and we’ve seen price point changes go up dramatically, and that’s cutting out some of the tiers of the labs. This is where our benefit of smaller businesses comes in, where you have to look for alternatives because your budget isn’t going to make what it used to.

We’ve also seen that leveling out happen in that same technology space with these tools, with smartphones, where many of the tools are simply not able to access the newer devices. And this is where we’re seeing that uptrend of technology come where eventually we’re going to get locked out. So we’ve plateaued out where many of the smaller tools and the bigger tools are getting the same level of access.

All you’re looking at is the difference between a brand, you’re getting a Tesla or you’re getting a Honda. But either way, you’re going to see some shifts change in the labs. The last one, which is an interesting shift that I saw because I didn’t think it would go this way, is when we started the pandemic out years ago.

We saw the shift to online training happen, and everyone was all over it because they couldn’t be around people. Then all of a sudden, we had a peak that said, oh, I don’t want to do online training anymore. Now I want to go back to see everyone in person.

And what’s happened is we realized we got in a habit, so we got into that convenient habit of getting to wear our flannel shirts, like I’m wearing now, and having our dogs or people around us and working from home. I want to go back to online training. I don’t want to do that process of going out and seeing the training in person as much as I wanted to do it online.

And we’ve seen that shift happen with a lot of digital investigations and also a big global shift because more and more countries globally are getting excited about doing digital investigations. So I think you’re going to see an increase in digital and on-demand training options available in 2024 from a variety of different vendors.

But anyway, this is my quick rundown of it. I’m going to be doing a lot more of these in forensic impact. Um, not only doing this, but I will make sure I transcribe them for many of you and also do some written articles as well that will still go into the blog.

I appreciate your subscription, and I will talk to you later. Bye.

Stay updated with the latest advancements in digital forensics by visiting Paraben Corporation and exploring their cutting-edge tools, training programs, and expert support to enhance your investigative capabilities.

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