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Proceedings Paper

Forensic document analysis using scanning microscopy
Author(s): Douglas K. Shaffer
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Paper Abstract

The authentication and identification of the source of a printed document(s) can be important in forensic investigations involving a wide range of fraudulent materials, including counterfeit currency, travel and identity documents, business and personal checks, money orders, prescription labels, travelers checks, medical records, financial documents and threatening correspondence. The physical and chemical characterization of document materials - including paper, writing inks and printed media - is becoming increasingly relevant for law enforcement agencies, with the availability of a wide variety of sophisticated commercial printers and copiers which are capable of producing fraudulent documents of extremely high print quality, rendering these difficult to distinguish from genuine documents. This paper describes various applications and analytical methodologies using scanning electron miscoscopy/energy dispersive (x-ray) spectroscopy (SEM/EDS) and related technologies for the characterization of fraudulent documents, and illustrates how their morphological and chemical profiles can be compared to (1) authenticate and (2) link forensic documents with a common source(s) in their production history.

Paper Details

Date Published: 22 May 2009
PDF: 11 pages
Proc. SPIE 7378, Scanning Microscopy 2009, 73782E (22 May 2009); doi: 10.1117/12.825186
Show Author Affiliations
Douglas K. Shaffer, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (United States)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 7378:
Scanning Microscopy 2009
Michael T. Postek; Michael T. Postek; Michael T. Postek; Dale E. Newbury; Dale E. Newbury; Dale E. Newbury; S. Frank Platek; S. Frank Platek; S. Frank Platek; David C. Joy; David C. Joy; David C. Joy, Editor(s)

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