Publication Details

WhatsApp network forensics: Decrypting and understanding the WhatsApp call signaling messages

KARPÍŠEK Filip, BAGGILI Ibrahim and BREITINGER Frank. WhatsApp network forensics: Decrypting and understanding the WhatsApp call signaling messages. Digital Investigation, vol. 2015, no. 15, pp. 110-118. ISSN 1742-2876.
Type
journal article
Language
english
Authors
Karpíšek Filip, Ing. (DIFS FIT BUT)
Baggili Ibrahim (University of New Haven)
Breitinger Frank (UniLi)
Keywords

WhatsApp, reverse engineering, proprietary protocol, signaling protocols, network forensics, decryption, mobile forensics, digital forensics, cyber security, audio encoding

Abstract

WhatsApp is a widely adopted mobile messaging application with over 800 million users. Recently, a calling feature was
added to the application and no comprehensive digital forensic analysis has been performed with regards to this feature
at the time of writing this paper. In this work, we describe how we were able to decrypt the network trac and obtain
forensic artifacts that relate to this new calling feature which included the: a) WhatsApp phone numbers, b) Whats-
App server IPs, c) WhatsApp audio codec (Opus), d) WhatsApp call duration, and e) WhatsApp's call termination.
We explain the methods and tools used to decrypt the trac as well as thoroughly elaborate on our ndings with
respect to the WhatsApp signaling messages. Furthermore, we also provide the community with a tool that helps in the
visualization of the WhatsApp protocol messages.

Published
2015
Pages
110-118
Journal
Digital Investigation, vol. 2015, no. 15, ISSN 1742-2876
Publisher
Elsevier Science
DOI
UT WoS
000366160500011
EID Scopus
BibTeX
@ARTICLE{FITPUB10979,
   author = "Filip Karp\'{i}\v{s}ek and Ibrahim Baggili and Frank Breitinger",
   title = "WhatsApp network forensics: Decrypting and understanding the WhatsApp call signaling messages",
   pages = "110--118",
   journal = "Digital Investigation",
   volume = 2015,
   number = 15,
   year = 2015,
   ISSN = "1742-2876",
   doi = "10.1016/j.diin.2015.09.002",
   language = "english",
   url = "https://www.fit.vut.cz/research/publication/10979"
}
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