The saddest aspect of life right now is that science gathers knowledge faster than society gathers wisdom. - Isaac Asimov, scientist and writer (1920-1992)

Monday, June 14, 2010

Digital photos as evidence in Romanian courts

What should I do in order to use digital photos as evidence in court? Do Romanian courts accept photos from a digital camera? Do I have to turn in my camera or it's enough that I print the photos?..and so on... these are just a few questions I frequently receive from people concerning the digital photos as electronic evidence in courts in Romania.

Digital photos as evidence are used through the same rules set as the classical photos in Romania. Differences in using them to trials may appear when the evidence is challenged and the need for technical experts to investigate their authenticity appears.

Same as in the case of email, we recommend caution in handling and keeping them, because this evidence is more able to be altered than the classical photos thus easier to challenge them.

You can produce and present them to court or to law enforcement bodies in print - but you must take care not to alter the original image and to have it in case it's needed.

In short, be careful that any image processing as: resizing, saving in another format, changing the brightness and contrast, compressing, no matter the software you use to do that, may alter the image and make proving the authenticity harder. Therefore,  whenever you process it for print if you need that, do it on a copy of the image.

[original post in romanian language]

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