Forensic video analysis is the scientific examination, comparison and/or evaluation of video in legal matters. -Forensic Video Analysis SWGDE V.1 Pg. 4


Video forensic experts typically perform their work for legal concernsWhen a video recording acts as evidence in court, forensic video analysis experts determine the footage’s integrity and whether the information presented can be trusted.


To confirm the authenticity of a recording, analysts will work through a series of stages.

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If the chain of custody can’t be fully identified, forensic video analysis experts will examine the recording closely to find evidence of editing on their own. Any signs of altering will classify the footage as inauthentic.


Video forensic service typically begins with an initial analysis of the evidence. This step is used to gather a big picture of the investigation, rather than focus on the small details of the footage itself. From here, experts will determine if forensic video analysis will be valuable to the case.


When a video is copied, the content may not fairly represent the information on the original. Forensic video specialists dedicate themselves to finding the original recording when they can. If obtaining the original copy isn't possible, an expert will follow the chain of custody.

The chain of custody follows the handling of a recording from formation to possession in court. This investigation involves answering questions about the footage, such as:

• Who made it?
• What equipment was used?
• Who had access to it?

This process will identify if anything was done to the footage that may signal tampering, or if it was in the possession of someone who may have edited it.


If forensic experts determine that their services are useful to the investigation, they'll start examining the footage closely. Digital integrity verification is the best way to discover signs of editing or alteration. This step can include a series of tests. For example, hash verification uses a mathematical operation to examine the data of a file. If the file has been changed in any way, the hash value will change. Experts may also inspect metadata or perform Exchangeable Image File Format (EXIF) and hex examinations. Looking at the video data can reveal a great deal about alterations. Forensic experts may even create a sample recording to see how the evidence compares.


When integrity verification isn't enough to authenticate a file, analysts will examine the pixel behavior and the recording's individual frames. They'll also perform macro-block and motion vector tests, and may even test equipment to explore video activity.


Our forensic reports are drafted in a courtroom ready formatting which includes our qualifications, what we were specifically asked to investigate, the analysis or testing performed, our opinions, and the strength of those conclusions. Our forensic reports are comprehensive and extensive but generated in a 6th grade understanding for litigation use.


Our team can serve as an expert witness for video authentication investigations by Primeau Forensics. Our expert witness services include trial preparation, testimony and a forensic report of all of the testing that was performed. This formalized report outlines our conditions, authentication methodology, and opinions. 


Furthermore, Primeau Forensics’ procedures assist the trier of fact to make determinations about the images used as evidence. Our experts also anticipate all possible direct and cross-examination questions when we prepare for testimony. 


In conclusion, our image authentication services have been successfully admitted in over 25 court cases in 10 states. Not to mention, they have also been used in several international cases. 



At Primeau Forensics, we use an unbiased, third-party perspective to provide evidence in court. We work with facts and make a point to communicate complex processes in easily understood ways. With 35 years of experience in the industry, we have experience working with attorneys, law enforcement, the United States government and other forensic experts.


Our team of analysts receives annual training to stay up to date on the latest examination technology. Our experts are certified by law enforcement agencies and are prepared to handle your digital picture authentication. 


We offer pro bono consultations before our video authentication services. Contact us today to request a proposal.

If you have a recording that you question or need help understanding, please contact us for a pro bono consultation.

Primeau Forensics