At Digital Assembly, we develop innovative technologies that make the collection, filtering, authentication and attribution of photo evidence quick, easy, and accurate. We currently have three crucial technologies that address the significant technological limitations and high-cost of traditional approaches to photo forensics.


SmartCarving™, introduced by Digital Assembly, is not only a new method but also a new way of thinking about data recovery. Files on disks and memory cards are broken into small blocks prior to storage. SmartCarving™ looks at a deleted file as a giant jigsaw puzzle where each block of the file is a piece of the puzzle. Recovering a deleted file is like solving a jigsaw puzzle with tens of thousands of pieces. Recovering all the deleted files from a disk or memory card is equivalent to solving multiple jigsaw puzzles with hundreds of millions of pieces simultaneously! Our research in this area continues to push the limits of file carving. Digital Assembly recently developed methods to successfully reassemble photos that are missing headers or missing pieces.


Collecting photo evidence is only the beginning of case work. Searching and filtering through thousands of photos to find the relevant ones for a case can be a daunting task, which is why Digital Assembly designed SmartFiltering™. SmartFiltering™ helps separate the wheat from the chaff. Through SmartFilters, use advanced signal processing and computer vision algorithms to filter photos based on image characteristics, contents, file information, EXIF data, and time stamps. SmartFiltering™ is designed to significantly reduce evidence processing times of busy investigators.


SmartCarving™ recovers most of the fragmented photos automatically. Whenever the SmartCarving algorithm takes a misstep, which could be a result of recovering heavily fragmented photos, GuidedCarving™ allows users to guide the algorithm back on track. By identifying the first point of fragmentation, GuidedCarving™ can help recover every photo from a disk—fragmented or not, all within a few mouse clicks.

Latest Research

We continue to develop the technologies necessary to improve digital forensics at the Information Systems and Internet Security (ISIS) laboratory at the Department of Computer and Information Science, Polytechnic Institute of NYU. For information on current (and past) research, see the selection of research papers below which present results published in leading technical conferences and peer-reviewed journals. For a list of upcoming conferences that professor Nasir Memon will be presenting at, please see the schedule below:

Recent Talks & Webinars

  1. Image Forensics: Collection, search, authentication, & attribution (An IEEE Spectrum Webinar)
    IEEE Spectrum 2010, Webinar by Nasir Memon
  2. Image Forensics: Collection, search, authentication, & attribution
    EuroForensics 2010, Keynote by Nasir Memon
  3. Challenges of SSD Forensic Analysis
    A talk by Nasir Memon

Research Papers

  1. Identification and recovery of JPEG files with missing fragments
    Digital Forensics Research Workshop (DFRWS), August 2009
  2. The Evolution of File Carving:The benefits and problems of forensics recovery
    IEEE Signal Processing Magazine, Vol. 26. No 2., March 2009
  3. Detecting File Fragmentation Point Using Sequential Hypothesis Testing [slides]
    Digital Forensics Research Workshop (DFRWS), August 2008 (Best Paper Award)
  4. Automated Reassembly of File Fragmented Images Using Greedy Algorithms
    IEEE Transactions on Image Processing, Vol. 15. No 3. March 2006
  5. Automated Reassembly of File Fragmented Images Using Greedy Algorithms
    Master's Thesis, Department of Computer and Information Science, Polytechnic University, 2005
  6. Automated Reassembly of Fragmented Images
    IEEE International Conference on Acoustics, Speech, and Signal Processing, 2003
  7. Automatic Reassembly of Document Fragments via Context Based Statistical Models
    Annual Computer Security Applications Conference, 2003
Learn about SmartCarving™