Forensic Document Analysis
Forensic examinations of documents and handwriting may play a crucial part in the success of a counterterrorism investigation. However, when presented as evidence in court, these analyses frequently undergo legal attacks for not having a sufficiently established scientific basis. Drexel University’s Data Fusion Laboratory (DFL) has conducted thorough testing to further support the scientific foundation of several types of document exams. To counter legal attacks, DFL has tested the reliability of certified forensic document examiners (FDEs) to analyze disguised handwriting and then compared their performance to persons who demographically represent those who serve on trial juries. DFL also tested and determined the effects of the context of other evidence on the accuracy of the conclusions of the FDEs. The last phase of testing measured the accuracy of FDEs when examining faxed documents to identify or exclude the machine that printed the document. The DFL efforts have shown that FDE analyses do have sufficient legal scientific basis and will help thwart future challenges in court. For additional information please fill out the Contact Information Form.