Digital Forensics Dispatch
Digital Forensics Blog
by Sensei Enterprises, Inc.
Digital Forensics Used in Employment Case to Uncover Fraudulent Texts Messages
March 16, 2023
Colleen Murphy at Law.com (signup required to read) recently published a report on an employment case involving text messages. The full opinion from the court can be found here. The plaintiff in the case was found to have produced fraudulent text messages in their federal employment case.
As a result of the fraudulent messages produced, the case was dismissed, sanctions were imposed and the plaintiff was ordered to reimburse the defendant for the cost incurred for the use of a digital forensic expert in the amount of $10,000.
The plaintiff, Anthony Gunter, filed several complaints in the U.S District Court for the District of Maryland in August of 2021 against his employer, Alutiq. In a deposition, Gunter said that he had deleted portions of text message threads, which he had provided as part of his complaints.
Murphy writes “Gunter suggested that Verizon erased the threads but was unable to explain why the cell carrier would only remove ‘select passages.’” A digital forensic examination of Gunter’s supervisor’s phone revealed that there were differences in what Gunter had provided and what resided on the supervisor’s phone.
During an evidentiary hearing, the expert forensic examiner testified to the messages produced by plaintiff as being fraudulent and inauthentic. The digital forensic analysis of items on mobile phones can reveal a lot of information. In this case an analysis of the provided messages and the supervisor’s phone assisted in determining the authenticity of the messages that were provided.
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