Strengths: A simple and effective solution for examining mobile devices
Weaknesses: Driver installation could be streamlined
Verdict: Paraben is the leader in mobile device forensics for a reason, and Device Seizure is it
The number and variety of mobile devices we use grows almost daily. Paraben's Device Seizure provides a quick and easy way to obtain evidence from a wide variety of these mobile devices, including PDAs, mobile phones and GPS devices. The Paraben product offers the ability to collect a multitude of data based upon the type of device being examined, and has a well developed case management and reporting function.
We tested the product with a BlackBerry Curve 8310 and a Garmin Nuvi 205w GPS unit. After entering the device PIN, we were able to acquire all current SMS, MMS and email messages on the BlackBerry, as well as the phone book, contact list, tasks, calendar, device settings and call logs, among other things. We were also able to acquire and examine the micro SD card that was installed in the device.
Moving on to our second test, our examination of the GPS yielded more information than we were expecting. All entered waypoints and points of interest were recovered. Additionally, the product recovered all exact routes taken since the last device reset, accompanied by date and timestamps.
Installation was easy. The installation disk comes separate from the drivers disk, but each one was easy to use. Our only complaint came with installing the drivers. After selecting which ones to install, the installation prompts for each one at the same time, instead of one after the other. The Device Seizure interface is intuitive to use and access to all features is user-friendly.
Acquisition in BlackBerry and Nuvi lasted less than two minutes for the primary data. The time extended once we included the micro SD card in the BlackBerry and the internal storage in the Nuvi, as would be expected.
While no manual is included, Device Seizure does have an extensive help file. Reading the initial sections will get any novice investigator underway in no time. Step-by-step instruction for data acquisition for the majority of supported devices is provided.
Paraben provides free phone and online support for the life of the product. At a price of £804, we feel that Device Seizure is great value for anyone with a need to examine mobile devices.