Relevance analysis using revision identifier in MS word

Jihun Joun, Hyunji Chung, Jungheum Park, Sangjin Lee

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


Electronic documents often contain personal or confidential information, which can be used as valuable evidence in criminal investigations. In the digital investigation, special techniques are required for grouping and screening electronic documents, because it is challenging to analyze relationships between numerous documents in storage devices manually. To this end, although techniques such as keyword search, similarity search, topic modeling, metadata analysis, and document clustering are continually being studied, there are still limitations for revealing the relevance of documents. Specifically, metadata used in previous research are not always values present in the documents, and clustering methods with specific keywords may be incomplete because text-based contents (including metadata) can be easily modified or deleted by users. In this work, we propose a novel method to efficiently group Microsoft Office Word 2007+ (MS Word) files by using revision identifier (RSID). Through a thorough understanding of the RSID, examiners can predict organizations to which a specific user belongs, and further, it is likely to discover unexpected interpersonal relationships. An experiment with a public dataset (GovDocs) provides that it is possible to categorize documents more effectively by combining our proposal with previously studied methods. Furthermore, we introduce a new document tracking method to understand the editing history and movement of a file, and then demonstrate its usefulness through an experiment with documents from a real case.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)323-335
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of Forensic Sciences
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2021 Jan


  • MS word
  • RSID
  • document forensics
  • document grouping
  • document relationships
  • relevance analysis
  • revision identifier

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pathology and Forensic Medicine
  • Genetics


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