Image of a person deconstructing a smart phone.

Initially, mobile phones were devices with the sole purpose of making phone calls; later developing to being capable of sending text messages as well. The latest mobile phones are currently more powerful than most home computers would have been 5 or so years ago. Mobile phones are now effectively hand held computers, multimedia players and communication devices all rolled in to one pocket sized device.

Data that can be recovered from mobile phones depends on the device itself but can include some or all of the following (the list is not exhaustive): contacts, call logs, text messages, multimedia messages, e-mails, photographs, videos, voice recordings, locations visited, notes, calendar, passwords, Internet history.

There are many more file systems and operating systems used by mobile devices than is the case for computers. Because of this, there is no one software tool in the mobile forensic market that can deal with all mobile devices.