U.S. flag

An official website of the United States government, Department of Justice.

Fundamental Research to Improve the Understanding of the Accuracy, Reliability, and Validity of Using the ENF Criterion for the Forensic Authentication of Digital Recordings

Award Information

Award #
Funding Category
Congressional District
Funding First Awarded
Total funding (to date)

Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2009, $864,638)

The field of audio recording authentication is a complex forensic science forming an important function of a forensic audio laboratory. Methods for the forensic examination of analog recordings are well established; however, digital recordings have now become more commonplace than the analog variety. The signal characteristics associated with digital recordings are completely different than that of analog, and additional techniques for assessing the integrity of a suspect digital recording are required. One such technique is the Electric Network Frequency (ENF) Criterion. The purpose of this proposal is to do fundamental research directed toward improving the understanding of the accuracy, reliability, and measurement validity of using the ENF Criterion in the forensic analysis of digital recordings. One of the goals of this research is to determine the accuracy and reliability of using ENF to determine the time a recording took place. With regard to the ENF procedure itself, studies need be conducted to help better quantitatively understand how well the various methods for obtaining ENF from digital recording work with regard to their accuracy and reliability. With regard to the matching process that is used to compare target ENF with reference ENF, various quantitative matching methods will be investigated.


Date Created: September 22, 2009