Document Type

Journal Article


Computing, Health and Science


Computer and Information Science, Centre for Security Research




This article was originally published as: Morfitt, K. , & Valli, C. (2006). A Forensic Log File Extraction Tool for ICQ Instant Messaging Clients. Journal of Digital Forensics, Security and Law, 1(3), 51-63. Original article available here


Instant messenger programs such as ICQ are often used by hackers and criminals for illicit purposes and consequently the log files from such programs are of interest in a forensic investigation. This paper outlines research that has resulted in the development of a tool for the extraction of ICQ log file entries. Detailed reconstruction of data from log files was achieved with a number of different ICQ software. There are several limitations with the current design including timestamp information not adjusted for the time zone, data could be altered, and conversations must be manually reconstructed. Future research will aim to address these and other limitations as pointed out in this paper.