Air & Space Evidence

The World’s First Space Detective Agency


There is no reason why data from Earth observation technologies should not be seen as a legally reliable, effective evidential tool in contemporary legal systems. However, as most modern Earth observation data is digital data, there could be issues raised by the opposing side as to whether it could have been processed, or altered, in either a deliberately misleading or accidental manner, in a way that could affect its probity. Key in this regard will be the digital processing and management of the Earth observation data. Different types of Earth observation data give rise to different additional concerns as evidence.

Many lessons have been learnt internationally that can show a court that the Earth observation evidence is the product of reliable principles and methods. We have unrivalled experience as to the many robust checks and controls which we can apply to the data to ensure that a court would have greater confidence in its value as evidence. Services that we can offer concerning the management, control and authentication of imagery include the following:

  • Examining and advising how you plan to offer the data as evidence
  • Supplying legal affidavits supporting any data so that the court may have more confidence in its value as evidence.
  • Requesting and providing a certificate of authenticity from the original image/photograph provider.
  • Supplying a data audit trail demonstrating the systems linking the chain of custody between the first stage digital data to the final Earth observation image, and how it has been managed and stored.
  • Demonstrating best practice and that trusted systems, ‘anchors of trust’ and recognised standards were followed (e.g. British Standards Institution, International Organization for Standardisation; Association of Image and Information Management). 
  • Advising on other forms of corroborative evidence that might support the Earth observation data.



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