5.2 Classification of Computer Evidence



According to Toh See Kiat, computer evidence can be classified into five categories.2

  • Computer-printed evidence

direct mechanical production of the computer's contents in a visible counterpart (eg: printed on paper).

  • Computer-stored evidence

records kept in machine-readable form, or in the computer's memory devices including data stored on various types of media including secondary storage media like WORM3 disks.

  • Computer-noted evidence

printouts and other computer-output from automatic data recorders and other automatic machine including automatic logs and journals mentioned in computer-printed evidence; and encryption of text.

  • Computer-created evidence

products of fifth generation computers processing 'artificial intelligence4 and 'fuzzy logic'5

computer models, stimulations and forecasts, including purchase orders generated automatically by the computer when it 'decides' to order when stocks run low.

  • Computer-transmitted evidence

refers to computer-printed and computer-noted evidence being transmitted to distant location.

includes purchase orders, remittance advices, payment orders, customs declarations, transmitted and received between trading company and its suppliers.

there is an automatic system which logs the incoming message, perhaps on an activity journal, and stores on non-eraseable media.


  1. Lee Swee Seng. 2005. Electronic Evidence in Malaysia. In Zaid Hamzah (author). E-Security Law & Strategy, page 146-147. Malaysia: Malayan Law Journal.
  2. Toh See Kiat. 1992. Paperless International Trade: Law of Telematic DataInterchange. Singapore: Butterworth Asia.

  3. ‘Write Once, Read Many: a data storage technology that allows information to be written to a disc a single time and prevents the drive from erasing the data. The discs are intentionally not rewritable, because they are especially intended to store data that the user does not want to erase accidentally.’

    2008. What is WORM (write once, read many)?. Whatis.com. 1. (online) http://searchstorage.techtarget.com/sDefinition/0,,sid5_gci966680,00.html (21 August 2009)

  4. 'Artificial Intelligence: An attempt to model aspects of human thought on computers. It is also sometimes defined as trying to solve by computer any problem that a human can solve faster.’

    2005. Artificial Intelligence: AI. The History of Computing Project. 1. (online) http://www.thocp.net/reference/artificial_intelligence/ai.htm (22 August 2009)

  5. 'Fuzzy Logic: problem-solving control system methodology that lends itself to implementation in systems ranging from simple, small, embedded micro-controllers to large, networked, multi-channel PC or workstation-based data acquisition and control systems.'

    D. Kaehler, Steven. Fuzzy Logic Tutorial.Seattle Robotics Society. 44. (online) http://www.seattlerobotics.org/Encoder/mar98/fuz/flindex.html (22 August 2009).