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Computer Forensics Schools and training?

Discussion of computer forensics employment and career issues.
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Computer Forensics Schools and training?

Post Posted: Jul 05, 05 20:13

Hello. I have just discovered this forum and already I can see how invaluable it will be in learning more about the field of computer forensics. I'll try not to turn this into the standard "How do I become a Computer Forensics Professional" thread by asking specific questions. First a little background.

I have a B.S. in Materials Science & Engineering. I'm looking for a career shift. I've always been comfortable with computers; building them from parts, networking, using different software packages i.e. science and lab apps. I just didn't want to pursue (with more formal training or career wise) what I thought was the standard computer science route. Programming or network admin. I discovered this relatively new field, and I believe this is exactly for what I've been searching. I can combine my analytical engineering expertise and desire to solve real problems (law enforcement as opposed to manufacturing production line bottlenecks). Given my background such as it is, I have the following questions:

1). What types of formal training/education are employers requiring?
2). What is the consensus concerning the Computer Forensics majors i.e.
Champlain College and other?
3) Would a B.S. in Computer Science be better/more respected as well
as providing a better base understanding for more specialized
forensics knowledge?
4). Or, is this a more self taught field.
5). Finally, I'm very interested in law enforcement work. Do I need prior
law training?

I have read the info pertaining to all the certifications one can receive, but I wonder if these are geared to professionals already practicing in the field. Would they even be applicable for a newbie? If I were to obtain these credentials without actual experience, would they do me any good?

Thank you for reading this incredibly long post, and for any responses or comments you have.  

Senior Member

Re: Computer Forensics Schools and training?

Post Posted: Jul 05, 05 20:30

If you are interested in Law Enforcement work, and you have an aptitude for computers, then a Law Enforcement track may be ideal for you. Generally you get hired at an agency and work into the position you want. Make it known that you have these skills, and be patient. My agency paid for all my training, which was good since it's quite expensive. As a LEO you will also have access to free training that is not open to the general public. If you go to work for a smaller agency without current cf examiners, then you may be able to introduce them to it by offering to learn it and do it part time.
Greg Marshall, EnCE 


Re: Computer Forensics Schools and training?

Post Posted: Jul 05, 05 21:28


Thanks for your quick reply. By starting out at a LE agency, do you mean as a cop or deputy, etc. I don't know if that type of work is where my talents lie. Thank God people want to do it. I just don't think I have the personality to walk the streets arresting dealers and speeders. Or is there a non police academy option that tracks into computer type investigative work. I confess, I haven't researched the options concerning police work beyond the federal level so my ignorance of what job tracks police can pursue is staggering!

Thanks again!  

Senior Member

Re: Computer Forensics Schools and training?

Post Posted: Jul 06, 05 01:09

I'm sorry, but I thought you were expressing an interest in the general field of law enforcement. I think that most agencies, as with mine, are using detectives for computer forensics. Naturally the only way to become a detective is to work the streets for a while as well. I do think that some of the forensic labs will start adding computer forensic to their services in the future. As this happens I believe people will find it easier to transistion directly into a position in computer forensics.
Greg Marshall, EnCE 

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