LONDON A new postgraduate course from The Open University has been designed to equip professionals with a basic understanding of guard against cyber crime including email bullying, online fraud, and electronic identity theft.
Computer Forensics and Investigations provides an introduction to the world of digital evidence collection, forensic computing and IT incident management. The course will enable people to know what to do in the first initial stages of investigation – being a 'first responder' to a situation and helping an organisation prepare for problems before theyhappen.
Constructed to balance the legal and technical aspects of this area, the course is relevant to IT professionals wishing to broaden their skill set, human resources managers who need to understand the issues and legal professionals seeking a new challenge.
Specially commissioned material has been written by a legal and technical expert in the field, Peter Sommer, who has acted as an expert witness in high-profile cases ranging from terrorism and fraud, Internet child abuse and international hacking to corporate espionage, defamation and murder. Sommer also has had experience in Westminster and Whitehall asa specialist advisor.
According to Sommer “Cyber crime is a major issue: in addition to the spectacular events that capture media attention, most businesses are likely, over a 12-month period, to suffer from incidents where digital investigation and evidence arerequired, for example, disputed transactions, employee disputes, minor frauds and attacks. Some universities offer courses to produce forensic technicians and analysts – but there is a huge need to support the 'first responder' as it is at this point that much useful information is lost, or even inadvertently destroyed.”
Students on the course will learn the essentials behind identifying, acquiring, preserving and analysing evidence and gain an overview of relevant law. They will use authentic computer forensic tools during investigations of specially prepared scenarios that replicate real-life situations, developed with input from digital forensic consultancyEvidence Talks Ltd.
This course will give a good grounding in forensic computing and equip students for further study. It is a 15-point postgraduate level course which can be used towards a postgraduate qualification. The first presentation of the course starts in May 2008, with registration closing at the end of March. The course will run again in November 2008.
For more information see the Forensic Computing and Investigations website.