Application of this Guide
When reading and applying the principles of this guide, anyreference made to NHTCU also includes the National Hi-TechCrime Unit for Scotland (NHTCUS) and the Police Service forNorthern Ireland (PSNI) unless otherwise indicated. This is sothat the anomalies between the different legal system andlegislation within Scotland, and the differences in proceduresbetween England and Wales, Scotland and Northern Irelandare included. It also makes this guide a national UnitedKingdom document.Details in this guide are designed to ensure good practicewhen collecting computer based electronic evidence;guidelines are not intended for use when dealing withevidence produced by witnesses from third party computersystems.
The guidelines in this document relate to:
Personnel attending crime scenes or making initialcontact with a victim
Also, when securing, seizing and transporting equipment fromsearch scenes with a view to recovering computer basedelectronic evidence as well as in the identification of theinformation needed to investigate a high tech crime.
Planning and management by investigators of theidentification, presentation and storage of computer basedelectronic evidence.
Evidence recovery staff
Recovery and reproduction of seized computer basedelectronic evidence by personnel who are trained to carry outthe function and have the relevant training to give evidence incourt of their actions. Persons who have not received theappropriate training, and are unable to comply with theprinciples, must not carry out this category of activity.
External consulting witnesses
The selection and management of persons who may berequired to assist in the recovery, identification andinterpretation of computer based electronic evidence.
Suggested procedures for access to certainmaterial by defence
Mobile phone handling procedures
This guide is not intended to be a definitive manual of everyoperation that may take place during the investigation of ahigh tech crime or recovery of computer based electronicevidence. It is intended to address the most commoncircumstances that will be encountered where computer basedelectronic evidence is involved; principally with electronicevidence obtained from computer based media and frommobile phones. It is recognised that other forms of electronicevidence exist that do not fall within the remit of this guide.Non-compliance with this guide should not necessarily beconsidered as grounds to reject evidence.