What is Video Forensics?


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What is Video Forensics?

Video Forensics or Forensic Video Analysis is the scientific examination, comparison and/or evaluation of video in legal matters. This definition has been adopted by accredited video forensic agencies around the country and internationally such as LEVA, NATIA as well as IAI.  This process must be performed in a forensic lab that is equipped with the appropriate tools, as well as protocols in order to process the video evidence with integrity and accuracy. These tools include software and hardware that are often implemented and used via a powerful desktop computer system. The methods applied to this scientific examination must be executed in a systematic and accurate nature. Being that these services are sought after by law enforcement agencies, litigators, private clients as well as other government agencies, the opinions and conclusions drawn from the science MUST be done with the utmost accuracy due to the weight they have in the legal system. Video Forensics is most commonly executed by three categories of a Video Forensic Team.

  1. Technician: Intake of the evidence, copies & converts media, performs preliminary enhancements and other assesments
  2. Analyst: Includes all technician skills, performs image comparison investigations, aspect ratio calibration, color correction, reverse projection, photogammetry, authentication, motion tracking, image authentication.
  3. Expert Witness: Includes all technician and analyst skills, provides consultation with litigators, generates formalized reports, peer/technical review, formulating opinions, evidence recovery.

Acquisition of Video Evidence

Digital Media Evidence: “Information of probative value stored in binary form” (LEVA-2013). CCTV is the most common type of DME.

-Video Evidence Recovery

Digital Video Formats

Digital video evidence is most commonly created by passive and active recording systems. A passive recording system for example would a recording system that doesn’t store information in its memory system. An active recording system would be one that does store information in its memory system. Active recording systems are most commonly produced with a digital storage medium such as a HDD, SSD or Volatile (flash) memory system. Video recorders create digital video recordings in these types of formats:

  • Open file format: An open format is a file format for storing digital data, defined by a published specification usually maintained by a standards organization, and which can be used and implemented by anyone.
  • Proprietary format: A proprietary format is a file format of a company, organization, or individual that contains data that is ordered and stored according to a particular encoding-scheme, designed by the company or organization to be secret, such that the decoding and interpretation of this stored data is easily accomplished only with particular software or hardware that the company itself has developed. These formats are more common when video evidence is extracted directly from the system that created it, because they are a more secure and higher quality formatting. These proprietary formats also contain digital information like Meta Data and Telemetry Data that can assist a video forensic technician, video forensic analyst as well as video forensic expert in their investigation.
  • Courtroom ready format:


Video Comparison

-Image comparision

-Video comparison

Video Clarification/Enhancement

-aspect ratio calibration

-color correction

-reverse projection


-motion tracking

-demonstrative video exhibits

Video Analysis/Authentication

-image authentication

-video authentication



What is a Video Forensic Expert Witness?

A Video Forensic Expert has the scientific knowledge, training and expertise necessary to enhance and authenticate video recordings that are being used in a criminal or civil court case. It is often necessary for the video forensic expert to conduct an evidence retrieval in order to obtain the highest quality video to enhance and authenticate.


What types of devices create Video Evidence?


If you have a video that you question or need help understanding, please contact us for a pro bono conversation. We apply our forensic expertise to cases in the United States and many countries around the globe. Any and all formats of audio and video accepted. Retainer agreement available on request; travel expenses will be quoted in advance excluding meal expenses and flat rate time for travel instead of hourly.

Click HERE to email your questions or

Call 800-647-4281 in the USA or +01-248-853-4091 Internationally.

Ed Primeau’s Curriculum Vitae has several references which include cases he has testified in as well as clients he has worked for in these cases.