News > EEMA Joins New LOCARD EU Project to Deliver Cross-Border Chain of Custody Assurance for Digital Evidence

BRUSSELS, 31st JULY 2019 - EEMA the leading independent European think tank focused on identity, privacy and trust, today announced that it will provide technical, legal, ethics and stakeholder communications expertise to the LOCARD project. As a Consortium Partner for this new EU-funded initiative, EEMA will work collaboratively with 19 institutions across the EU during the next 36-months, to develop a solution that delivers cross-border chain of custody assurance for digital evidence.

LOCARD recognises the vast challenge and opportunity digital evidence presents in criminal investigations. Its aim is to provide a holistic platform for chain of custody assurance along the forensic workflow, creating a trusted distributed platform that allows the storage of digital evidence metadata in a blockchain.

In a ‘Proposal for a Regulation  of the European Parliament and of The Council on European Production and Preservation Orders for electronic evidence in criminal matters’ published in April 2018 the impact of the Internet on crime was highlighted, stating that As a result, in a growing number of criminal cases involving all types of crime, Member State authorities require access to data that might serve as evidence and that is stored outside their country and/or by service providers in other Member States or third countries.’ The proposal targeted the challenges presented by the international dimension of digital evidence and provide law enforcement and prosecutors with ‘tools to address the way criminals communicate today and to counter modern forms of criminality’.

Chair of EEMA, Jon Shamah, states: “The exponential increase in the volume of digital evidence, emerging from a diverse array of sources such as smart devices, cloud services, surveillance systems, social media etc, presents organisations, law enforcement and prosecutors with an immense challenge but also a vast opportunity.” He continues: “Being able to swiftly gather evidence from a wide range of sources and manage the data in a way that preserves the chain of custody will enable cases to be investigated thoroughly, prosecuted faster and with higher success rates.”

Shamah adds: “LOCARD acknowledges that crime is increasingly borderless and without a way to share digital evidence in a manner that maintains its integrity, perpetrators will continue to evade the justice system.”

LOCARD is the latest EU project in which EEMA has been an instrumental Consortium Partner. EEMA is currently participating in FutureTrust - a Horizon 2020 project that supports the practical implementation of eIDAS regulation throughout Europe and beyond, and LIGHTest  another Horizon 2020 initiative whereby 14 partners from nine European countries are building a global community based on international standards and open source software.

LOCARD Consortium Partners

Athena Research & Innovation Center, StAG Srl, Anti-Phishing Working Group – EU, MOTIVIAN, IMC Technologies, University of Padova, Telefónica Investigación y Desarrollo, EEMA, Neurosoft, Law Science Technology & Society, Vrije Universiteit Brussel, V-ICT-OR, INFOTREND Co Ltd, University of Malta, Centre for Security Studies (KEMEA), Technical University of Berlin, Norwegian University of Science and Technology, Hellenic Police and the General Inspectorate of Romanian Police.

Download press release in pdf  here

For more information about LOCARD, watch this short video: