Today’s world is becoming more and more mobile every day.
In fact, 91% of all people own a mobile device and 56% own
some type of smart device. It is no surprise that today there
are more mobile devices on the earth than there are people!
Equally impressive is that the amount of data we consume
is becoming increasingly focused on mobile devices. In fact,
according to Pew Research, 55% of all internet traffic in the
United States is from a mobile device, which is a first for
overall internet traffic.
Mobile data is now part of the Big Data world. And speaking of Big Data, there are new words out there that we’re
beginning to see—“zettabyte” and “yottobyte.” A zettabyte is
10 to the 21st power and yottabyte is 10 to the 24th power—
not really something the human brain can fully comprehend!
Think of it like this, a zettabyte is the equivalent of 250
billion DVDs and 36 million years of HD video. A yottabyte
is a lot more than that. To put data into perspective, researchers estimate that by 2015 big data in our world will amount to
And not only is there A LOT of data, the data that is all
around us is moving extremely fast via transactions, posts,
e-mails, and blogs to name a few. Here are some fairly as-
tounding statistics that speak to the velocity of data:
• Facebook does over 105 terabytes of data every half hour.
• In 2012, there were 38,194 photos shared on Instagram
• Twitter sees 300,000 tweets per minute.
• Google has over 2 million search queries every minute.
• There are over 200 million e-mails sent per minute.
The numbers above represent all data whether it is from a
PC or mobile device, and over half of Internet traffic in the
U.S. originates from a mobile device.
In a digital investigation scenario, mobile device data is
becoming more and more vital to solving crimes. Today, most
of a user’s personal information, and what is most influential
in any investigation, can be found on his or her mobile device.
Examiners rely on this data, combined with the data found on
endpoints, network servers, or storage media, to gather evi-
dence, build a case, and develop a clear picture of the crime.
So, what types of mobile data are important to investiga-
tions? For both personal and BYOD use, people are creating,
posting, sharing, storing, and logging information including
passwords, personal and financial data, e-mails, texts, and posts on social media sites. Multi-media,
photos, music, and videos add to the data mix as well as the device data, geolocation, browser activi-
ty, user settings, and policy set by MDM tools. Factor in that all this data is stored on the device and
Mobile Data Drives a Big Data World
In a digital investigation
scenario, mobile device
data is becoming more
and more vital to solving