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Starting a Forensics Consulting Career  

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josh.lowery
(@josh-lowery)
New Member

Hello all,

I recently graduated and started a job in the forensics consulting world. It is a lot different than the forensics that I learned in school through my B.S. in computer forensics and I am trying to make the switch. I am wondering what should I be focusing my energy on in regards to learning. I have a good grasp on general forensics and analysis but I can always learn more.

To be honest the most challenging part for me so far is the consulting side of it. Learning how to bill and how to talk to clients. Does anybody have any tips or suggestions to someone who is just starting out in the field.

I have tried looking around for different sources of information but I cannot find anything that relates specifically the computer forensics branch. I have been reading up on general consulting books such as "How to Make it Big as a Consultant", "The Consultants Bible", and the new EnCE study guide.

Any information would be appreciated.

Thanks guys!

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Posted : 03/04/2013 12:12 am
athulin
(@athulin)
Community Legend

To be honest the most challenging part for me so far is the consulting side of it. Learning how to bill and how to talk to clients. Does anybody have any tips or suggestions to someone who is just starting out in the field.

Not really … I don't think it is or has been much of an entry field most people seem to enter it from other areas. It's always useful to learn the basics (billing, contracting, etc.) in an already established environment, than having to find one's own way through the jungle. Well, at least it can be more economical…

I can add, though, that Gerald M. Weinberg's book 'Secrets of Consulting' is the only book on the topic (in general and so far) that I wished I had read when it was published instead of 15 years later.

ReplyQuote
Posted : 03/04/2013 12:45 am
ForensicRanger
(@forensicranger)
Active Member

Two things… a book I can recommend Million Dollar Consulting - very good advice for growing a consulting business.

The other Do you think you're ready to be a consultant in forensics? A degree in and by itself does not adequately prepare you for doing forensics - experience cannot be replaced. There is a lot at stake For the client you hires you, for the potential person who (may have) committed the act you're trying to establish and for you.

There is a liability aspect that can spell disaster - for you and your clients… have you given thought to this?

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Posted : 03/04/2013 5:18 am
josh.lowery
(@josh-lowery)
New Member

Thanks for the book recommendations, I will have to look at those.

Right now I am in collections but with the possibility to grow into a consultant. I am learning the way that the job works and I would like to supplement my knowledge from forensics with consulting information. I really enjoy this company and would like to offer the best services that I can and be prepared for things when they come up. I have been reading books like "How to Make it Big as a Consultant" and books/articles on the social skills needed of consultants but they seem more aimed at the management/business end of the field.

So I guess to answer ForensicRanger's question, I feel that I am ready to "learn" how to become a consultant.

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Posted : 04/04/2013 3:34 am
jhup
 jhup
(@jhup)
Community Legend

So I guess to answer ForensicRanger's question, I feel that I am ready to "learn" how to become a consultant.

By becoming a consultant? Do you see any ethical issues around this?

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Posted : 04/04/2013 5:42 pm
josh.lowery
(@josh-lowery)
New Member

Well I am not a technically a consultant yet. I work for a consulting firm but am only an analyst right now. I am wanting to rise up to the consulting position eventually and want to start acquiring the skills that I will need to do so. I really do not see any ethical issues at all…

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Posted : 04/04/2013 9:46 pm
jhup
 jhup
(@jhup)
Community Legend

I misunderstood. I thought you would learn forensics, while working as a forensics consultant.

I would consider that unethical.

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Posted : 05/04/2013 12:05 am
josh.lowery
(@josh-lowery)
New Member

lol ya I can see where you would consider that unethical but I already have a B.S. in computer and digital forensics as well as my ACE cert and working on my EnCE cert. So I have a good foundation for the forensics portion, I can always grow on the forensics side and I at least have some ideas and direction for that but it is the consulting part that eludes me. Would joining an organization like the HTCIA be beneficial? It would allow me more access to forensics professionals in the area and learn from their experience.

ReplyQuote
Posted : 05/04/2013 1:40 am
jhup
 jhup
(@jhup)
Community Legend

I know several of the more prominent non-vendor specific certifications also come with listserv memberships. There are often requests for assistance for out of region collections. This maybe of use.

If I wanted to restart my consulting I would approach legal firms, and sell some work for them.

I would approach local forensicators and tell them I am available to sub for them in areas of expertise.

I would also approach the office of Public Defender within my jurisdictions (state, city, county, etc.), and Legal Aid offices to provide pro bono services. I would also drop by my various local LE offices, and provide them presentations. All these would get my name out there.

Of course this is just one facet of consulting.

ReplyQuote
Posted : 05/04/2013 8:30 pm
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