Prior Publisher

The Association of Digital Forensics, Security and Law (ADFSL)


There are many applications available for personal computers and mobile devices that facilitate users in meeting potential partners. There is, however, a risk associated with the level of anonymity on using instant message applications, because there exists the potential for predators to attract and lure vulnerable users. Today Instant Messaging within a Virtual Universe (IMVU) combines custom avatars, chat or instant message (IM), community, content creation, commerce, and anonymity. IMVU is also being exploited by criminals to commit a wide variety of offenses. However, there are very few researches on digital forensic acquisition of IMVU applications. In this paper, we discuss first of all on challenges of IMVU forensics. We present a forensic acquisition of an IMVU 3D application as a case study. We also describe and analyse our experiments with this application.


Wikimedia Foundation, Inc (2014) Comparison of instant messaging clients. Retrieved on December 17 from http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki /Comparison_of_instant_messaging_clients

Wikimedia Foundation, Inc, (2013) Child grooming. Retrieved on December 3 from http: //simple.wikipedia.org/wiki/Child_grooming

Europol (2013) Threat Assessment - Italian Organised Crime. Retrieved on January 19 from https://www.europol.europa.eu/sites/ default/files/publications/italian_organised_crime_threat_assessment_0.pdf

IMVU (2014) About IMVU. Retrieved on December 17 from http://nl.imvu.com/about/

M. Goodman (2014) Crime and Policing in Virtual Worlds, Retrieved on December 17 from http://f3magazine.unicri.it/? p=360

M. Garcia-Ruiz et al. (2011) An Overview of Child Abuses in 3D Social Networks and Online Video Games. Investigating Cyber Law and Cyber Ethics, Issues, Impacts and Practices, Hershey, Information Science Reference (IGI Global), p. 321

Paraben Corporation (2014) Paraben Chat Examiner. Retrieved on December 18 from: https://www.paraben.com/chat-examiner.html.

Belkasoft (2014): http://belkasoft.com/

National Institute of Justice (2007) Investigations Involving the Internet, Retrieved from https://www.ncjrs.gov/pdffiles1/nij/

M. Kiley, S. Dankner and M. Rogers (2008) Forensic Analysis of Volatile Instant

Messaging Advances in digital forensics IV, New York, Springer, 2008

B. Lun (2012) Forensic Investigation for Instant Messenger, School of Computing and Mathematical Sciences, Auckland, New Zealand, 2012

M. Dickson (2006), “An examination into AOL Instant Messenger 5.5 contact identification,” Elsevier Ltd., 2006

M. I. Husain and R. Sridhar (2009) iForensics: Forensic Analysis of Instant Messaging on Smart Phones Digital Forensics and Cyber Crime, Albany, NY, USA, Springer, p. 182

C. Sgaras, M.-T. Kechadi and N.-A. Le-Khac (2014) Forensics Acquisition and Analysis of instant messaging and VoIP applications Springer Verlag LNCS 3850, 2011

S. Garfinkel, A. J. Nelson and J. Young (2012) A general strategy for differential forensic analysis Elsevier Ltd.,

AutoIt Consulting Ltd (2014) AutoIt, Retrieved on December 20 from https://www.autoitscript.com/site/autoit/

Mozilla Developer Network, (2015) “Retrieved on February 5 from https://developer.mozilla.org/en-US/

L. M. Aouad, N-A. Le-Khac and M-T. Kechadi, "Lightweight Clustering Technique for Distributed Data Mining Applications", Springer LNAI 4597, 2007,

N-A. Le-Khac, L. M. Aouad and M-T. Kechadi "A new approach for Distributed Density Based Clustering on



To view the content in your browser, please download Adobe Reader or, alternately,
you may Download the file to your hard drive.

NOTE: The latest versions of Adobe Reader do not support viewing PDF files within Firefox on Mac OS and if you are using a modern (Intel) Mac, there is no official plugin for viewing PDF files within the browser window.