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Digital Evidence Preservation: Considerations for Evidence Handlers



Barbara Guttman, Douglas R. White, Shannan Williams, Tracy Walraven


The preservation of digital evidence (DE) presents unique problems beyond traditional evidence preservation. This document addresses considerations related to the preservation of digital evidence. This document is part of a series on evidence management and its primary audience is evidence management professionals. The document discusses traditional sources of digital evidence including physical storage media and digital objects and also addresses law enforcement generated digital evidence. The document further discusses key considerations related to digital evidence preservation and the difference from the preservation of other evidence types. Related considerations, such as acquisition of digital evidence are only addressed when there is overlap with preservation.
NIST Interagency/Internal Report (NISTIR) - 8387
Report Number


digital evidence, forensics, computer forensics, evidence management


Guttman, B. , White, D. , Williams, S. and Walraven, T. (2022), Digital Evidence Preservation: Considerations for Evidence Handlers, NIST Interagency/Internal Report (NISTIR), National Institute of Standards and Technology, Gaithersburg, MD, [online],, (Accessed May 22, 2024)


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Created September 8, 2022, Updated November 29, 2022