The Advantages of Using a Specialized Forensic Image Processing Software

Despite being successful also for many other applications, Amped FIVE has been specifically designed for forensic specialists and law enforcement groups working mainly on video footage from video-surveillance.

What’s the traditional approach for working with surevillance video?

  1. A crime happens
  2. If there are CCTV cameras in the neighborhood go there and pick up the videos of interest along with the proper player
  3. If the video has some good quality frames of for the purpose of person or vehicle identification, we save it as image for further investigations

Now, what if there are no good frames at all? In many cases the video will be rejected without trying anything, even if some basic image processing could lead to gathering some worthwhile evidence. This approach leads to ignoring evidence that could have helped to identify the perpetrator of the crime.

So far, one more case unsolved.

On the other side, if someone has the technical skills to try something, it usually follows a pretty confused workflow that can consist of the time consuming tasks of:

  • Exporting the proprietary video to a standard format.
  • Importing and exporting between different image and video formats, since there are functions usually do-able only (or easily) with either specific video or specific image processing software. So, for example, you first extract a video, from that you grab a frame and load it in Photoshop, plus some other software or a Matlab script for some specific purpose.  The evidence can get lost in the workflow because how do you easily document what you have done?

This problem is big and growing. As the number of videos and images to investigate is always increasing. However, the quality is almost always never good enough. Furthermore, different common defects are usually combined together and, using this approach, have to be sorted one at a time. Investigators usually spend hours:

  • Trying to understand the problems
  • Searching and trying tools and ways to solve the problems
  • Converting, importing and exporting files
  • Trying to document properly the process to the court
  • Very often with few results and little scientific value

If you don’t have the right tools for the job, this leads to the following consequences:

  1. Fewer cases solved.
  2. Evidence is thrown out as inadmissible. If the processing actually leads to something, the use of a poorly defined stack of loosely integrated tools is very difficult to sustain in court. Can you easily explain your work process to the DA? Can the defense show all the holes and weaknesses?
  3. Time is wasted and few case can be solved due to the time wasted to switch continuously between programs

This is why we developed Amped FIVE. Choosing the right forensic image processing software allows investigator to:

  1. Work in one program for both images and videos.  The same interface and you can always work with the original.  No extra rendering or conversion steps and loss of resolution.
  2. Have all the needed filters both for common and less common cases = More crimes solved
  3. Employ a coherent workflow specifically designed for forensic needs and documenting evidence for the courtroom.  You can be confident that your work is valid from the scientific point of view
  4. Save time and money: A single software program with all the needed tools allows to easily save 90% of the time in common cases. Even if the quality is too bad to get anything, you have lost minutes, not hours or days, and you are sure to have tried all the possibilities.
  5. Bottom line: Solve more cases.  When promotion time rolls around, who looks at the numbers? You know who!

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