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Thinking of going to school for Computer Forensics  

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Mike71
(@mike71)
New Member

I am 33 years old, married and have one son. I have currently been working at Delta Airlines and with the way the airline business has been lately, I thought of going to school now just in case. Besides, I would love to have a job that I really enjoy, and computer forensics seems like that type of job for me.

I have looked at the Champlain online classes, I see you can get an associates or bachelors. By taking the clases online, can you finish faster than the 2 or 4 years (associates or bachelor) ? Also, I have seen these courses offered on the internet and the courses only lasted from one week to 5 months depending on the course. You only received a certificate. Are these for people already in another type of computer field who want to broaden their skills?

And if anyone knows, what types of jobs would be available if you only had an associates in computer forensics ?

Thanks for any help/advice.

Mike

Quote
Posted : 16/02/2005 2:29 am
gmarshall139
(@gmarshall139)
Active Member

Of the examiners I routinely deal with none of them have a degree in it, most just came from a general investigative background and got all the training they could while doing the work. However the degree programs probably are a good way to go if your trying to break into the field. I could foresee you going to a police dept. with a degree and landing a position. Not so sure about the prospects in the corporate world. Like Jamie said, law enforcement is not for everyone, particularly computer forensics due to the stuff you'll be working with on a daily basis. These programs are popping up everywhere so there must be some interest. Good luck to you.

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Posted : 16/02/2005 1:26 pm
Mike71
(@mike71)
New Member

Thanks for the reply,

May sound strange, but I think I would rather work in the police field or similar rather than the "corporate world". I would assume the pay is lower? I know you are dealing with the scum of the earth on a regular basis, but as a father myself, it would be very rewarding to do get these people.

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Posted : 16/02/2005 3:51 pm
Jamie
(@jamie)
Community Legend

Mike,

Regarding the pay scale, I suspect you're right in assuming that law enforcement will generally pay less although to be honest my experience is that the differential is not that great for those actually doing the work. My guess would be that the difference is probably more marked in upper management.

As Greg says, there are a lot of these courses around at the moment. I suppose only time will tell if they're aimed more at meeting the needs of the employer or the aspirations of the student (or, hopefully, both).

In any event, best of luck with your endeavours and as I've just mentioned in another thread, if you get the chance to do any real "hands on" work be sure to grab it. I'm not sure whether or not your previous experience is in computing but if that's not the case then a sys/network admin position may be a sensible "stepping stone" to consider.

Kind regards,

Jamie

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Posted : 21/02/2005 6:53 pm
Mike71
(@mike71)
New Member

Thanks Jaimie,

No, I don't have any prior computer experience other than the basics. I'm great with computers, but that won't help me land a job.

I checked the GBI (Georgia Bureau of Investigation) and on their website it says you need a "bachelors degree in computer forensics" or an associates and 2 years experience. this was for the Child Protection Task Force which is something I would love to do.

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Posted : 22/02/2005 9:35 pm
gmarshall139
(@gmarshall139)
Active Member

Most law enforcement jobs beyond the road (patrol) are filled internally. So the first step many times is to apply for one of those positions. Not for everyone, but a great experience, and who knows where you'll end up. I loved it, but things change and I was asked to do different things. I had some experiences I'll never forget and I think I'm better for it.

I'm suprised that Georgia is hiring directly in to computer forensics. I think it's a good idea, it just doesn't happen very much. I would be curious to see if they actually hire anyone right of the street for those positions. I'm still waiting for more of the forensics labs like the Division of Forensic Science in Virginia to start doing computer forensics. This is the only forensic practice that is commonly done by law enforcement agencies, except naturally the largest ones who have complete forensic labs at there exclusive disposal. Most of us use centralized lab facilities like the one I mentioned in our state.

I think that perhaps the best way to get in to the field would be to get on somewhere as a systems administrator, and introduce the practice to the bosses. If you are interested in Law Enforcement look particularly for those agencies, they hire network people too.

Another route is to learn arabic. Lots of agencies will put you through forensics training if you can read/speak a language such as that. What about the military? In the last couple of years I've been in forensics classes with lots of military students?

Anyway, just a lot of ideas, I'm good at that. Maybe something that will work for you. Work hard at it and it'll happen.

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Posted : 23/02/2005 2:23 am
Mike71
(@mike71)
New Member

I'm suprised that Georgia is hiring directly in to computer forensics. I think it's a good idea, it just doesn't happen very much.

yeah, it said applications were open to the public, but I imagine they would hire from within as a frist choice.

I'm 33 years old, married with a 15 month old son so the Military is out of the question. They probably woulnd't take me anyway, lol 😆

If you are interested in Law Enforcement look particularly for those agencies, they hire network people too.

that might be my best bet.

ReplyQuote
Posted : 23/02/2005 3:39 am
armresl
(@armresl)
Senior Member

Hi Mike71,

Just remember that you can't go in with the

" I know you are dealing with the scum of the earth on a regular basis, but as a father myself, it would be very rewarding to do get these people."

attitude. Take the evidence as it comes in and then decide on which direction a case is going to go.

ReplyQuote
Posted : 23/02/2005 10:54 pm
dietro
(@dietro)
Member

Mike,

It appears you are in Atlanta, correct? If so, you should stop by Kennesaw State Univ next week for this: http://www.southeastcybercrimesummit.com/index.html I'll be coming over on Monday. From everything I've heard from everyone I've talked to about it, the registration fee is well worth it.

BTW, KSU offers online and classroom courses in forensics.

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Posted : 26/02/2005 5:45 pm
Mike71
(@mike71)
New Member

Thanks, I have been looking into the K. State forensics certification also. I still am just researching as I don't know what direction I want to take. A associates or bachelors will take much longer than a certification course. not sure what I am going to do.

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Posted : 07/03/2005 9:34 pm
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