Open Source Code in Forensic Data Analysis

Interhack founder C. Matthew Curtin discusses source code in forensic data analysis with the Open Source Club at The Ohio State University on February 25, 2016. Drawing from his forensic computer science practice, Curtin shows application of the scientific method to forensic data analysis.

Source code allows not only unambiguous expression of how a conclusion came from a known body of data but confidence that the answer is not the result of a bug or unexpected behavior in the analytical tools.

In this presentation, Curtin shows the impact of problems in analytical methods as they have come up in real court cases—including potential death penalty cases—and how source code can help to prevent incorrect testimony from being presented to jurors weighing the evidence. He finally also shows how programmers competent in the art of software development have an advantage over computer examiners who must rely without understanding upon tools made available to them.

About the Open Source Club at The Ohio State University

Established in 1999, The Open Source Club is a registered student organization at The Ohio State University. The club promotes the use and improvement of open source software, and contributes to a greater understanding of how software works. Interhack founder C. Matthew Curtin was the original faculty advisor. The club is online at

About Interhack

Interhack is a cybersecurity firm with a national practice that helps clients to understand technology, how to use it safely, and how to interpret the data it generates. Based in Columbus, Ohio, the firm is on the web at