Often times stored and deleted data can be the easiest and most efficient way to gather valuable evidence during an investigation. Most people don’t understand how the undelete and dat extraction process works for how an electronic storage system on smart cell phones. Here is are some questions I get when clients ask us to retrieve and extract undeleted data from the smart phone device. They ask me, “Can I get all deleted data from a cell phone?” “Why didn’t your undelete process work as there is missing data?” “What is the cost and how long does the whole process take? “How long will it take?” “Do you need the cell phone to get data?”
The iPhone undelete process works as follows:
- The cost for undeleting data from most iPhones is $350
- We require the phone password so without it, the data extraction and undelete process will cost much more like $1500 to $2500 and will take much more time
- If the phone has an encrypted backup setting, the likelihood of getting into the phone data is lower and the cost increases to the $1500 – $2500 range
- The phone has storage which takes and stores all data
- The phone has a certain capacity of storage that can be eventually filled up if enough items are stored there
- Stored data includes photos, videos (these two take the most space), text messages, phone logs, websites visited, GPS information as well as other text data
- When anything is deleted, it simply frees up space on the storage for other files but does not truly delete the deleted data
- As you use the phone, additional data gets stored on the phone and may overwrite the deleted data or may be stored on blank or virgin storage space
- Overwritten deleted data is data that is completely erased and become irretrievable
- The more the phone is filled up, the less likely you are to find deleted data since there is a higher likelihood that the deleted data will have been overwritten since there is less area to put new data
- Photos are stored differently and will be deleted more quickly and the likelihood of retrieving them is low unless very recently deleted (And by recently deleted I mean within a day or so)
- Text messages and other textual data are usually undeleted and restored successfully unless the phone is near its storage capacity
The bottom line here is that the more the phone is filled with data, the data you are searching for may have been overwritten by other stored data.
The process for undeleting the data from the iPhone is fairly easy.
- After receiving your phone, we first make a backup of the phone which speeds up the process of getting your phone back
- The backup usually will be 2-4 hours depending on the amount stored on the phone but we ask for morning drop off when you want the phone back the same day
- Next we start the process of restoring all of the deleted data. This process can take a full 24 – 48 hours depending on the phone
- Then we will be able to see the deleted data restored but it will be difficult to send you this since the data required our software to read it. So we will need further processing to get you what you need. If there is an emergency such as a runaway, missing person, kidnapping or other emergency matter, we can read through the data for an additional charge and provide any clues to you and the police
- We will then process the data into an easy to read Excel file with tabs indicating the various categories of restored data
- We can email the file to you, provide a CD disk or place it on a flash drive for your review
- Due to the size of the file and the number of pages, printing a report is not possible
The way the Android undelete process works is as follows:
- The cost is $450 however there are some models that will require higher charges
- The service may take up to 2 days as the extraction process is more complicated
- We recommend dropping the phone in the morning and then expecting pickup no earlier than 5pm the same day but often longer
- In the even that your data is not extractable for the basic process, you have 2 choices.
- We perform a higher level extraction service that requires keeping the phone for 3-5 business days at a cost of $1500 or
- We return your phone and $350 of the original $450
- You will receive a report with the undeleted data on a CD, thumb drive or by email
Give us a call with questions as we are happy to answer them.