Hashing Technology and PhotoDNA Database in Multimedia Forensics

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Usanut Sangtongdee
Kochchakorn Poengranai
Pinyo Meephiam


Multimedia files are currently vital evidence for cybercrime investigation, particularly online child abuse crimes which have been increasing daily with sexual abuse imagery being transmitted through social media platforms. Hashing technology plays an important role in performing the search and screening of digital files. Binary hashes result from the calculation of traditional functions that verify whether a file is equipped with confidentiality and integrity. Robust image hashing is another function in hashing technology that utilises a new form of mathematical calculation. This function becomes more popular in practice due to its ability to effectively detect image similarity. Police, law enforcement agencies, non-profit organisations, internet service providers, and social media providers have jointly established collaborations through database technology to detect and monitor unusual content related to child sexual abuse material. A hash database that accounts for both binary and PhotoDNA hash values is shared with various police departments to analyse sexual abuse material appeared in electronic evidence. However, in order to select digital forensic tools, it is essential for them to be comprehensively compatible with both binary and robust hash queries.


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Sangtongdee, U., Poengranai, K., & Meephiam, P. (2020). Hashing Technology and PhotoDNA Database in Multimedia Forensics. Journal of Criminology and Forensic Science, 6(2), 181-196. Retrieved from https://so02.tci-thaijo.org/index.php/forensic/article/view/244801
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