Document Examination Laboratory

Students learn how to examine documents such as passports, bank notes and driving licences to assess whether they are authentic or have been tampered with in any way. Specialist equipment includes:

  • Video spectral comparator (VSC)
    Documents are exposed to a variety of different lights - including ultra violet and infra red – to identify areas where different inks have been used, whether built-in security features exist and even to determine whether an entry has been removed or replaced.
  • Electrostatic Detection Apparatus
    This is used to ‘lift’ indented writing impressions from paper. This technique can detect indentations made on a page up to seven sheets below the page where the original writing is visible.
  • Photography and image processing
    Students are trained in best practice, using specialist photographic stands and light sources to accurately photograph evidence. Students are also trained in digital photography and image processing.

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