Are you an investigator who wishes to extract a piece of evidence from a wiped drive? Compared to typical data recovery, forensic data retrieval is more serious and complicated. At most times, legal teams have to extract data from deliberately corrupted, damaged, or deleted storage drives. However, a simple and common recovery tool won’t do the job. Only specialized forensic data recovery software can reconstruct previous events to retrieve the evidence files. There are plenty of reliable tools in the market to extract data for forensic purposes. But in our post, we will discuss only the best forensic data recovery software according to its features, design, pricing, customer service, and user feedback. So, keep reading.
- Part 1: Forensic Data Recovery Overview
- Part 2: Top 10 Forensic Data Recovery Softwares
- Bonus Tip: How to Use the Forensic Data Recovery Software for Firensic Data Recovery?
Part 1: Forensic Data Recovery Overview
Forensic data recovery involves identifying, analyzing, and extracting forensic evidence from storage devices for legal procedures. The proof can be in the form of documents, video, audio, or images deliberately deleted, hidden, or damaged by criminals to hide their activities.
Part 2: Top 10 Forensic Data Recovery Software
Here are the top forensic data recovery tools discussed in detail:
With multi-platform support, BlackLight by BlackBag is a comprehensive forensic data recovery solution for legal professionals. It optimizes digital investigation and can recover varied datasets easily.Interface and Overall Design
The software has a clean interface, sharp fonts, attractive color schemes, and advanced options. It is also very light on hardware so performing normal operations in the background of the data recovery process is a breeze.Main Features:
- Retrieve files with obfuscation.
- Several filters to narrow down visible and hidden file searches.
- Can create reports for all applications, devices, messages, and contacts.
- Can extract information related to location data for pictures.
- Supports Windows, Mac, iOS, and Android devices.
- Automatically parse recent documents, account information and recycle bin, etc.
The tools come with a comprehensive User Manual divided into logical sections and screenshots. You’ll also receive regular updates, and customer service is active 24/7 for technical assistance.Pricing
BlackLight costs around $2600.User Feedback
BlackLight is a reliable and comprehensive forensic recovery software to help in a criminal investigation. However, it can be a bit advanced and too expensive for beginners. Also, it doesn’t support recovery for bit-for-bit copies. There is another tool, MacQuisition, for that.
Tenorshare 4DDiG data recovery software is a state-of-the-art software for retrieving forensic files that are corrupted, deliberately deleted, or hidden in the source. It supports all file systems, SSD and HDD drives, USBs, and SD cards. This tool can even recover forensic data from digital cameras and encrypted storage devices.Main Features:
- Intuitive interface and high data recovery rate.
- Repair files by merging their fragments.
- Extracts above 1000 types of forensic files, including documents, video, images, and audio.
- Recovers data that is formatted deleted, hidden, or corrupted.
- Recover RAW data, lost partitions, and broken or formatted systems.
- Advanced algorithm for Quick and Deep scanning.
- Preview modes to recover only targeted files.
- Several filters to narrow down the search.
- Pause and resume scan flexibility.
- Supports all Mac and Windows OS versions.
The interface and overall design of 4DDiG are easy to navigate for both beginners and professionals.Customer Service
The 4DDiG customer service is extremely responsive, and you’ll get 24/7 technical support. Moreover, you’ll also get free one-year upgrades with the software.Pricing
Both monthly and yearly licenses are available for 4DDiG. You can get a monthly subscription for $45.95, a yearly subscription for $59.95, and a lifetime license for $79.95. For enterprises, 4DDiG is available at $89.95, billed annually.User Feedback
The 4DDiG Data Recovery software can recover forensic file evidence of more than 1000 types and in almost all scenarios with high accuracy. This tool is easy to use and won’t require any special training. In addition, it is also affordable for both individuals and enterprises.
Magnet AXIOM by Magnet Forensics is an advanced digital forensic data recovery software for collecting relevant evidence. It uses an artifact-first approach to analyze and recover data from vehicle sources, mobile, computers, and the cloud and create reports.Interface and Overall Design
It boasts an intuitive interface purpose-built for non-technical investigators with an Analytics tool that automatically generates insights to help your investigation.Main Features:
- Advanced carving and parsing methods to extract data from evidence sources.
- Categorize media content for identifying relevant evidence.
- Extracts data from the cloud, Android, iOS, Mac, and Windows.
- Collect data from the cloud and IoT.
- Analyze browser history and recovers deleted data. .
- Create automated evidence points.
The Magnet AXIOM customer service provides an instant solution for cases and troubleshooting problems from Monday to Friday. The minimum wait time is 24 hours.Pricing
The company offers custom pricing that changes yearly. However, you can contact customer service to get a free trial.User Feedback
Magnet AXIOM is a pretty nifty tool for recovering forensic data from the cloud, mobiles, and computers. You can also use it to recover a device's or file's complete history. However, it requires a specialized system with huge memory and is quite expensive.
Access Data is another great forensic data recovery software app with a complete Forensic Tool Kit (FKT). It supports E-Discovery and digital forensic investigations and offers a faster search and recovery process than any other solution in the market.Interface and Overall Design
It has an attractive graphical user interface that comes with powerful but advanced features. The interface is also customizable.Main Features:
- Creates forensic disk images and supports a wide range of data types.
- Supports hard drives, mobile phones, and internet storage.
- Indexes data upfront for increased search and processing speed.
- One shared case database reduces dataset complexity and costs.
- Gives a clear visualization of events.
The AccessData Customer service offers technical support through the live chat option. You can also send emergency emails to customer support on weekends.Pricing
The AccessData FKT costs around $5,144.User Feedback
AccessData FKT offers a faster search and data recovery process than other solutions in the market. It is also scalable and comes with a password-cracking solution. However, this tool is quite complex and requires rigorous training to use.
X-Ways Forensics is a newcomer in the forensic data recovery industry but is becoming popular due to its innovative suite of tools for disk cloning and data extraction tools. It can retrieve deleted and lost files, access remote RAM, reconstruct virtual RAID, analyze remote network drives, and access cloud storage.Interface and Overall Design
It is portable software and can be used on Windows via a USB stick without installation. The interface is simple and has fewer technical functions. Moreover, it is not a resource-hungry tool, and the download file is only a few MBs in size.Main Features:
- Allows collaborating with people using the same software.
- Ability to identify NTFS and ADS file systems.
- View and edit binary data by using templates.
- Read file system structures and partitions inside the .dd image files.
- Supports remote system analysis, annotations, and bookmarks.
If you request a free estimate, you’ll get a reply within minutes. However, there is no refund policy, and you won’t get your money back, especially if you’ve ordered the wrong product.Pricing
It costs around $1,153 for a yearly subscription.User Feedback
X-Ways Forensics is a cost and resource-efficient forensic data recovery software that offers deleted and hidden file extraction and data cloning. It has many unique features to offer. However, it only supports Windows OS.
Cellebrite is a full suite of professional forensic data recovery tools ideal for solving crime cases. Combined with BlackLight and Cellebrite Digital Collector, it offers a faster and unmatchable file extraction process for Windows, Mac, Android, and iOS.Interface and Overall Design
Its interface is designed specifically by keeping in mind to give insights into cases, help in criminal investigations and retrieve hidden and deleted relevant data.Main Features:
- Offers unmatchable data recovery techniques.
- Supports an extensive range of devices.
- Delve deeper and perform a thorough search to retrieve data.
- Able to access 40+ applications on Android devices.
You’ll get continuous technical support and free upgrades.Pricing
The Cellebrite forensic data recovery tool set costs around $6000.User Feedback
Cellebrite offers a full suite of forensics tools that offers unsurpassable data recovery solutions. The suite is critically acclaimed and utilized by law enforcement agencies. However, the entire suite is extremely expensive and requires professional training to use.
CERT Triage Tools
First developed to protect against cyber attacks, CERT Triage Tools is a forensic data recovery software free suite utilized by many law enforcement agencies. However, these tools are not commonly known, but they work fast to collect on-scene data and capture RAM.Interface and Overall Design
The interface is user-friendly, with an overall responsive design. It comes with a GNU Debugger extension that determines the severity of Linux app bugs.Main Features
- Responsive and fast on-scene data acquisition.
- Captures RAM.
You’ll get upgrades, but the coding is in the process, so that you won’t get them regularly. However, you can make queries on GitHub forums.Pricing
It is free to use.User Feedback
CERT Triage tools are ideal for on-scene data acquisition and capturing RAM quickly. However, they are not available widely, and GitHub is currently developing the code for public use.
Advik Data Recovery Software
Advik is the best forensic data recovery wizard to retrieve data from corrupt and damaged sources. It supports all NTFS and FAT file systems and several file formats.Interface and Overall Design
It offers a simplistic and easy-to-use interface with limited functionality.Main Features:
- Recovers permanently deleted forensic data from hard disk USBs and SD cards.
- Supports NTFS and FAT hard drives.
- Live preview for lost data.
- Restored corrupted, formatted, and damaged Windows data.
After buying the software, you’ll get one year of free upgrades plus 24/7 technical support.Pricing
It costs $39 for personal use and $99 for a business license.User Feedback
Anyone from novices to professionals can use this forensic data recovery tool to retrieve corrupted, deleted, and formatted evidence files. It is also an affordable option. However, this tool only supports Windows OS.
SysTools Data Restore Tool
SysTools Data Restore tool is a capable forensic recovery software for extracting corrupted and permanently deleted data from hard drives, SD cards, USBs, and even iPods. It supports a wide variety of drives, including SATA, SCSI, IDE, and file systems like NTFS, FAT, and XFAT.Interface and Overall Design
The innovative design offers several filters to recover target files according to their types and marks them in red for easy detection. Moreover, the scanner scans the entire file system to list the targeted files in the software panel.Main Features Main Features:
- Offers various category filters to save only the required files.
- Recovers forensic data, including photos, documents, videos, and audio.
- Supports a variety of file systems and disk types.
- Highlights the recovered data in red.
- Supports Mac and Windows OS.
24/7 live chat support is available. You can also contact the SysTools team through Skype.Pricing
The personal license is available for $39, the business license for $99, and the enterprise license for $399 respectively.User Feedback
SysTools is an excellent tool for extracting forensic files, as it supports almost all file systems and formats. However, its functionality is limited, and the tool doesn’t recover formatted data as well as deleted data.
Xplico is free to download forensic data recovery software that supports IMAP, HTTP, and much more. There is no limit to the number of files you can retrieve.Interface and Overall Design
It offers a web-based user interface backed by SQLite, MySQL, or PostgreSQL.Main Features:
- Supports both IPV4 and IPV6.
- Offers PIPI to support digital forensic data recovery.
- Create a dispatcher to organize extracted data.
- Allows collaboration in real-time.
- Multiple users can access and manage cases.
As it is open-source software, you won’t find 24/7 technical support. However, you can look for replies to your queries and technical support on its community forum, which is quite active.Pricing
It is open-source software.User Feedback
Xplico is quite an impressive tool with Geo map features and no size limit on the number of forensic files you can recover. However, it has limited functionality, so you may have to download other tools.
Bonus Tip: How to Use the Forensic Data Recovery Software for Forensic Data Recovery?
Each forensic data recovery software comes with its own advantages. However, we’ve picked the best forensic data recovery software to show how it extracts forensics data as an example due to its three simple retrieval steps. Here’s how it can recover forensic evidence:
- Download and install the 4DDiG tool on your system. Open the tool to choose the drive where you suspect the evidence is hidden. You can set the target file types from the option in the top right corner.
- Press the “Start” button, and the tool will look for hidden, deleted, formatted, or corrupted evidence. You can toggle the filters and preview modes to view and recover files.
- Once you are satisfied that all evidence is recovered, hit the “Recover” button to recover files. Save them in a folder other than the drive where you find them to prevent overwriting.
Digital forensic data recovery software is crucial for law enforcement agencies and criminal investigators to identify and extract hidden or deleted evidence for legal procedures. We’ve listed some of the top forensic data extraction tools in our post. Although they are all excellent in their own way, some are too expensive, while others have certain limitations. Our top pick is the Tenorshare 4DDiG data recovery software which offers great price flexibility and supports all file formats and storage devices. Besides, it can retrieve forensic files in three simple steps with high accuracy.