Journalism

I’ve covered a range of topics, including investigative, opinion and profiles, for trade, niche, and regional media:

Did Tunnel Vision Result in a Long Beach Woman’s Wrongful Conviction?
This three-part series explores how limited physical and digital evidence led police and prosecutors to rely on the statements of a victim with a traumatic brain injury, as well as other questionable witness statements, to underpin an already weak case. Why, then, did the case hold up?
Part 1: March 2024
Part 2: Tunneling Through Sand
Part 3: Under Its Own Weight

This Land Is Your Land; This Land Is My Land
Friends of Panthertown joins forces with local and national organizations to conserve and protect Panthertown Valley.
Plateau Magazine, October 2021

COVID-19’s Hidden Challenge: Spotting Child Abuse When Schools are Closed
This article focused on mandated reporters in a virtual education setting, including creating a “community safety net” to include essential workers who might encounter families outside of schools. (Note: this piece was written before my contract relationship with Zero Abuse Project began.)
The Crime Report, April 2020

Revenge Porn Victims Caught Between Tech and the Law
This short piece follows my previous article by examining shortcomings in both technology and legal remedies for so-called “revenge porn,” and makes an argument in favor of properly applied restorative-justice approaches.
The Crime Report, February 2020

Investigating Nonconsensual Intimate Image Sharing.
This piece defines image-based sexual abuse as well as describing the impact it can have on its victims. Legal remedies, the need for better training, and reactive as well as proactive law enforcement and digital forensics response are all covered.
Forensic Focus, December 2019

Facebook’s Privacy Manifesto: What Does It Mean For Digital Forensic Investigations?
This article examined the “manifesto” offered in March of that year in terms of the digital forensic artifacts, interoperability plans, mosaic of metadata, and what it all meant for investigative information sharing and collaboration.
Forensic Focus, May 2019

Opinion

Is Your Phone Safe? The Dangers of Police Access to Private Digital Data
Describing the gray area between digital forensics and investigations, I suggested that the “democratization” of digital forensic technology could be watering down the science of digital forensics.
The Crime Report, December 2020

#DFIRforGood Is A Great Start: Let’s Use It To Ask Tougher Questions
I called on digital forensics vendors to recognize technology’s role as both a beneficiary and a driver of inequities, and work towards more transparency to customers and the public at large.
Forensic Focus, September 2020

When Digital Forensics Vendors Hire Research Talent, Where Does It Leave Research?
I questioned the tradeoff between resources and profit, vendors’ closed, black-box competitive advantage, the commoditization of relationships and the community, and offered a path towards stronger community-based research.
Forensic Focus, February 2020.

Trade

BYOB to a CTF to Improve Your DFIR Game
Now offered in virtual formats both during and outside of conferences, CTFs continue to attract participants. What can you expect from the experience, and what do you need to participate? Bring your own box (BYOB) and find out!
Forensic Focus, August 2020

Following Up: When Digital Forensics Vendors Hire Research Talent, Where Does It Leave Research?
When we published our March opinion piece, the reaction on Twitter — mostly from vendor representatives themselves — was swift and strong. While few other non-vendor researchers joined the discussion, the points participants raised are worth a follow-up.
Forensic Focus, June 2020

Forensic Pattern of Life Analysis
When it comes to digital devices, how users interact with them can tell a very detailed story about any given timeframe.
Forensic Focus, February 2020

How To Help Small Governments Respond to Ransomware Attacks
Ransomware has captured a large share of mainstream media coverage in recent months, due in no small part to attacks that have crippled small local and county governments in the United States.
Forensic Focus, December 2019

Can Your Investigation Interpret Emoji?
Emojis’ technical basics, how they’re used, and the way the law addresses them are covered, along with what digital forensic examiners can do when they encounter emoji during an investigation.
Forensic Focus, November 2019

The Newest Way to Get the Message
More people are turning to high-tech methods to report crime — and law enforcement agencies need to be prepared
The Informant, Winter 2011

The 2-Year Digital Forensics Degree with Chris Curran, Huntington Beach (CA) Police Dept./Cypress College
How community colleges fit in the ever-expanding field of digital forensics education
DFI News, January 2011

The Ideal Digital Forensics Course with Tim Watson & Gary Kessler
No one disputes the growing need for digital forensics experts and services. In a push to meet demand, many colleges and universities have created courses, certificates, and degree programmes. However, to remain competitive in the long run, academic institutions must be able to graduate properly educated and trained examiners who fulfill the need for their expertise.
Digital Forensics Magazine, Issue 5

A Digital Forensics Lab by Any Other Name with Todd Shipley, Warren Kruse & James Carden
Digital forensics laboratories may once have been specialized, but increasing case complexity demands broader capabilities across disciplines
Digital Forensics Magazine, Issue 3

Investigating the Social Web
New training helps investigators find criminals and evidence on the Internet
Law Enforcement Technology, January 2010

The Crime Scene Evidence You’re Ignoring with Det. Kipp Loving, Tracy (CA) Police Dept.
Computers and cell phones aren’t the only digital devices that hold evidence
Law Enforcement Technology, October 2009

Wireless Crime, Wireless Criminals
Investigating 802.11 networks and the people who abuse them
Law Enforcement Technology, July 2009

High-Tech Stalking
GPS devices, IP sniffers and even identity theft are used to harass victims. How do investigators get evidence to build a case?
Law Enforcement Technology, May 2009

The Mobile Device Investigator’s Toolbox
What works best for newbies, what requires more training, and how to tell the difference
Law Enforcement Technology, November 2008

The Other Side of Mobile Forensics
How service provider data fit into the larger mobile-evidence picture
Law Enforcement Technology, July 2008

Cell Phone Bombs
How law enforcement can (and can’t) prevent them
Law Enforcement Technology, November 2006

Cyber Stalking and Bullying
What law enforcement needs to know
Law Enforcement Technology, April 2006

Cyber Harassment
Its forms and perpetrators
Law Enforcement Technology, April 2006

Does Your Agency Need an ICAC Unit?
Part I: Blueprinting Success
Law Enforcement Technology, March 2005
Part II: Nuts and Bolts
Law Enforcement Technology, April 2005

Vehicle Event Data Recorders
What they can and can’t do, and what to do when you encounter them
Law Enforcement Technology, November 2004

More Than a Cell Phone
Tools you can use in criminal investigations
Law Enforcement Technology, April 2003

Profiles

Answering the Mountains’ Call
A profile of Highlands Biological Foundation’s executive director, Charlotte Muir.
Plateau Magazine, October 2021

Where Conservation and Community Meet
PLATT’s Parker Platt on the principal values governing his approach.
Plateau Magazine, August 2021

What’s in a Destination?
John Woods has distinguished The Park on Main—now he’s part of distinguishing all of Highlands for a whole new demographic.
Plateau Magazine, February 2021

Dedicated to the Plateau’s Future Leaders
How Bonnie Potts leads the Macon County Literacy Council to build better readers-and better citizens.
Plateau Magazine, December 2020

Handbuilding Highlands’ Future
Kaye McHan is piecing together a plan for uncertain times.
Plateau Magazine, October 2020

A Community of Residents and Visitors
How Old Edwards Inn’s general manager inspires a sense of togetherness.
Plateau Magazine, August 2020

A Love for the Mountains
Inspiring memories – and tourism revenue – with luxury lakefront property rentals.
Plateau Magazine, June 2020

Blending Art With Community
How a lifelong love for the visual arts is leading Highlands’ The Bascom: A Center for the Visual Arts—and its community—forward.
Plateau Magazine, April 2020

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