Javis Olson, Sales Manager, Detego Global

Javis Olson is Detego Global’s Sales Manager for North America.

FF: What is your background and how did you end up in your current role?

I have served in the US Army for over 18 years and currently serve in the Army Reserves. While on active duty and with the 3rd Special Forces Group as a CRD Direct Support Enabler, I had various responsibilities, including on-scene site exploitation. This was my first foray into digital forensics.

From there, I became an instructor teaching digital forensics to members of USSOCOM (the US Special Operations Command), where Detego was one of the main tools in the course. After nearly five years in that role, I joined the fantastic team at Detego Global as a Sales Manager for North America.

FF: What does a typical day at work involve?

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My role involves interacting with potential clients and demonstrating the extensive functionalities of our all-in-one digital forensics platform. From rapid data gathering and triage to sophisticated AI-driven analytics, I guide clients through the breadth of our platform’s capabilities and illustrate how they can leverage them to enhance their investigative processes.

Another crucial part of my role involves conducting virtual and on-site training to ensure users maximize the value of our technology. I also travel across America to attend technology conferences and specialized events focused on digital forensics, incident response and cybersecurity. These events enable me to engage one-on-one with professionals across military, law enforcement and enterprise sectors and demonstrate how our technology can help overcome their investigative challenges. Every day is different, and that’s something I love about my role at Detego Global.

FF: What do you enjoy most about your work?

I find immense satisfaction in knowing that my work directly supports professionals dedicated to keeping communities and countries safe. The ability to provide them with essential tools to unearth critical information is incredibly fulfilling. The insights our tools provide play a critical role in helping prevent terror attacks and counter threats from organized crime syndicates, gangs and other criminals.

Having been deployed in challenging environments, I understand the urgency and importance of quick access to information. It can literally be a lifesaver. So, enabling the DFIR community to quickly access crucial information, evidence and intelligence by leveraging Detego technology is not just a job; it’s a mission that I find deeply rewarding.

FF: Who uses the solutions Detego Global develops and what sorts of investigations are they used in?

Our solutions at Detego Global have a wide-reaching and profoundly impactful application range. We equip military units, intelligence agencies and police forces with state-of-the-art tools that significantly bolster their on-scene and lab-based capabilities in counterterrorism, intelligence operations, and law enforcement. These technologies are not just tools but game-changers in strategic operations and critical response scenarios.

Our tools have also proven indispensable in offender management and community safety initiatives. They are trusted by specialized units that combat serious crimes like child abuse, human trafficking, homicides and drug trafficking. The efficiency and accuracy our solutions bring to these investigations can often mean the difference between a case solved and a crime unsolved.

In the corporate sphere, our technologies provide robust protection for sensitive data, acting as a shield against a wide range of digital threats. This safeguarding is crucial for maintaining the integrity of our clients’ operations and the safety of their end users.

FF: Can you share an example of a case that Detego Global’s solutions helped solve?

In my experience, there was a particularly challenging situation where Detego Global’s solutions, specifically our Ballistic Imager, would have been game-changing. I was part of a team tasked with imaging and extracting data from various devices belonging to an individual critical to an ongoing investigation. The complexity and variety of the devices presented a significant hurdle.

A considerable amount of time was spent just setting up the process for imaging the computers, which diverted attention and effort from data analysis.

At that time, Ballistic Imager hadn’t been introduced to the US. Had it been available, it would have significantly expedited the imaging process. This rapid imaging capability would have allowed me to focus more on the intricate task of analysing data with Detego Analyse. In subsequent situations where we did have access to the Ballistic Imager and Detego Analyse, their efficiency and speed were nothing short of transformative.

FF: How do you keep up to date with new types of digital crime and corresponding forensic techniques?

I primarily rely on insights directly from those on the front lines – our end users. There’s an unparalleled depth of knowledge among these professionals who encounter evolving digital threats in the field and lab on a daily basis. Maintaining a direct and open line of communication with our diverse customer base is crucial in a realm where scenarios can shift rapidly.

In addition, I actively engage in ongoing research, participate in industry conferences, and keep up with relevant academic publications. These avenues provide a broader perspective and complement the real-time insights from our users.

FF: What advice would you give to someone looking to start a career in digital forensics?

If you’re considering a career in digital forensics, there are several key factors that can set you on the path to success. Firstly, obtaining security clearance, a relevant degree and industry certifications will form a solid foundation for your career. These credentials are not just formalities but essential tools that open doors to advanced opportunities in this field.

However, the most crucial advice I can offer is to embrace a mindset of continuous learning and skill development. Digital forensics is a rapidly evolving field, and the moment you feel you’ve mastered your skill set, new technologies and methods emerge. Stay ahead of the curve by regularly updating your knowledge and skills.

Additionally, develop your analytical thinking and attention to detail – these soft skills are invaluable in digital forensics. Begin by exploring foundational courses and certifications in cybersecurity or computer science, and seek out communities or forums where professionals in digital forensics share insights and experiences. Remember, your learning journey is as important as the destination in this field!

FF: What training or resources would you recommend to someone interested in this field?

If you’re new to digital forensics and don’t have a degree, start with the IACIS website for essential training and certification. Consider the NCFI for premier cyber and electronic crimes training, especially for law enforcement. Also, NW3C offers excellent courses in high-tech and economic crimes. Begin with their introductory courses and then specialize as you progress.

FF: And finally, what do you like to do outside of work?

I am an avid outdoorsman so you can find me bass fishing, hunting, going for a run or playing football with my boys. I am also a recently certified drone pilot #shameless plug.

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