July 01, 2008
BlueBear Law Enforcement Services Helps Reduce Your Child Exploitation Investigation Time by Over 85%
BlueBear Law Enforcement Services (www.bb-les.ca) is a company that develops software to assist Law Enforcement agencies. Their flagship product is called LACE (“Law Against Child Exploitation”).
LACE technology was created to satisfy a demand by Law Enforcement agencies for forensic tools that would automate and assist in the expedient processing of trial cases. "LACE" enables investigators to efficiently categorize vast amounts of image data from online sources and confiscated computers, dramatically reducing over 85% of the time required to analyze a confiscated computer.
This software uses advanced image evaluation to automate much of the hands-on portion of processing image evidence. This in turn significantly reduces officers’ time, effort and stress when processing a CE case. Sophisticated biometric analysis is used to find, extract and match faces to automatically compile and create lists of victims as well suspects. With LACE these images can also be matched against an existing facial database, populated from previous cases. LACE is also unique in that it enables participating Law Enforcement agencies, worldwide, to securely share investigative work results. This enables all participants to benefit from each others’ efforts and thereby maximizing all resources.
Lace includes the Lace Imager application which can rapidly index all of the “visible” image files on the hard drive. As it drills down through all the directories on a hard drive (CD, DVD or FlashDrive), the Lace Imager automatically detects and lists any and all of 80 different image files types, including thumbs.db, which are stored on the devise. This is very useful in cases where a full forensic examination may be unnecessary. The Imager software can complete a search and listing of 100,000 images in less than one minute which allows an investigator to very quickly, and easily, determine if a deeper forensic examination is required.
The technology BlueBear has developed goes beyond the widely used HASH technology:
- LACE enhances file matching by offering the ability to identify similar images by using Image Mark™ - a BlueBear innovation.
- Image Mark™ enables matches to be made to images that have been: cropped, rotated, watermarked, eyes covered, faces covered, stretched, colours changed (B&W, Sepia, etc.), thumbnailed, format changed (JPEG vs. TIFF vs. PNG, vs. GIF, etc.), resolution changed, and damaged files (partially deleted or downloaded, forensically recovered)
- LACE facilitates the secure and non-image-based sharing of both Hash and Image Mark™ databases so that the results of image categorization work can benefit more police agencies.
- LACE can also automatically detect, extract, and match any faces in the images.
LACE is currently being tested by Federal, State & Municipal Law Enforcement Agencies in the U.S., Canada, Europe, Australia and New Zealand.
The Lace Software Suite is available for evaluation by qualified police agencies in a free trial.3