Increase in Digital Crime and Rise in Security Concerns Shall Pace the Computer Forensics Market

The computer forensics market is expected to experience an upsurge on account of the increase in sophisticated digital crime and terrorist attacks and economic growth in developing countries. Computer forensics which refers to analysis and reporting of digital data for a legal purpose is the most prominent market within the overall digital forensic market. Computer forensics have become much dynamic in the field of cyber-crime, to perform a structured investigation, in order to detect hidden facts for accurate investigation results. A variety of techniques are used by investigators to inspect and search hidden, encrypted or deleted files or folders.

Computer forensics have gained wide-popularity in developed regions such as North America and Europe owing to technological advancements and increased cyber-crime rates. While, rise in corporate fraud has increased the demand for computer forensics. The UK and other European countries such as Italy and Germany, have observed an increasing trend for computer forensics as the various industries in the region have become more aware about safety and security of their data. Consequently, manufacturers are exploring innovative products and services to strengthen their market presence and meet the growing demand. Computer forensics have also gained popularity in developing countries such as India and China owing to the increased piracy threats and cyber-crimes, coupled with increased governments expenditure in digitalization of sectors such as banking, law enforcement, defense, and information technology, among others. Rise in disposable income and increase in the number of educated consumers have also supplemented the growth of the market in the region.

The recommendation of computer forensics as a necessity for proper investigation by government organizations, has rapidly increased their adoption rate in both developed and developing economies. For instance, in order to maintain integrity, the governments of different countries in regions such as China and Brazil among others have formed new regulations that are based on the access to data and penalty in the case of modification of data or wrong entry in data records.

To compete with established players, other manufacturers such as Paraben Corporation, Binary Intelligence, and Digital Detectives, among others plan to develop new computer forensic tools to gain consumer attraction and increase their market share. However, the major players in the market such as, Access Data Group Inc., Guidance Software, Inc., and LogRhythm Inc. have been utilizing economies of scale to meet the rising demand for computer forensic. The established brands have adopted product launch, partnerships, and business expansion as their growth strategy to strengthen their foothold in the market. For instance, in February 2015, Access Data Group Inc. announced the development of newly improved software version Summation 5.6, which provides case assessment, processing of comprehensive data, and management, final review and transcript management. The main aim of this product launch was to reveal the enhanced feature of this software among consumers, to gain popularity in the market. However, rising complexity of mobile devices and increased utilization of cloud based applications may hamper the growth of digital forensics market.

Geographically, North America has emerged as the largest market for digital forensics. Increase in cyber-crime rates and technological advancement make this region favorable for growth in the forecast period. However, Asia-Pacific is projected to have the maximum growth rate in the digital forensics market driven by increase in cyber-crimes and rise in consumer awareness in developing countries such as China and India.

How to Become a Digital Forensic Specialist

A Digital forensic specialist is someone who analyses the digital crime scene in case of cyber attacks and malicious intrusions in order to find the criminal and prove their involvement. Just like a regular forensic specialist, their digital counterparts analyze the smallest bit of evidence and use it to construct a foolproof case against the culprit. Evidence in case of a digital crime includesIP addresses, small footprints left when the hacker tried to access or change something, and more. A degree in computer forensics, criminal justice or engineering is a must in order to pursue a career in this profession. You will also need to attend formal training in order to become a digital forensics specialist.

Steps needed to become a certified digital forensics specialist

There are a number of universities that offer a formal program which you can take to become a forensic specialist. Similar courses can also be found online and can help you master the basics of this program, but courses offered at colleges are generally preferred since they use a more hands on approach and provide formal training that is more structured, and therefore more useful.

The most popular certifications for anyone interested in a career as a digital forensic specialist are:

  • Certified Computer Forensics Examiner Certification
  • Certified Hacking Forensics Investigator Certification
  • Certified Electronic Evidence Collection Specialist
  • Certified Forensics Analyst
  • Certified Computer Examiner Certification

There are a number of specialties within the domain of digital forensics, and depending on your interests, you can pursue either one of them. The main purpose of these courses is to prepare experts who can handle cyber crimes or cyber attacks. Since computers have become commonplace today, crimes that are committed using them have increased as well, so these courses will create a well trained force of forensic experts who can handle such crimes and track the criminals.

What you will learn during digital forensics training program

These computer forensics programs will teach you how to hone your investigation skills, track potential culprits more effectively, how to find the clues, how to handle the evidence you discover properly, and the many policies regarding computer crimes that you need to be aware of. Becoming a Certified Forensic Analyst will ensure that you are able to help law enforcement agencies stay ahead of cyber criminals, and can prove to be a great career for you as the field of digital forensics grow even further.

How to Benefit From Computer Forensics Services

It’s almost impossible to find an online crime that can’t benefit from computer forensics services. Any information that is passed along through computers, fax machines or cell phones, to name a few, can be accessed, analyzed and reported on by a computer forensics expert.

One service provided by computer forensics includes electronic discovery. This is where documents, email, intellectual property, trade secrets, copyright issues, databases, internet activity, instant messaging, computer security and network intrusion are all examined and determined what information might be valuable to a case or situation. This area is used when a client has knowledge of what information is on the computer, or other device, and needs help in guiding them in the right direction as to how to use the data.

Computer forensics services also include data discovery and analysis. This is when a computer forensics team uses techniques to retrieve data that was thought to be lost. Once this material is recovered it is then analyzed to determine who the author was, when it was created/deleted and it’s relevance to your specific situation. This is an important phase that needs to be handled very carefully as to not lose sensitive information. Even turning a computer on or off can corrupt evidence.

An extremely important computer forensic service is the preservation of evidence. In this step a forensic image is made of all pertinent data. This image is actually what is being analyzed and the original source where the data was extracted is put in a safe and confidential environment. The security and authenticity of this information is analyzed very carefully and handled only by a digital forensics expert.

Once these steps are properly completed it is the job of the computer forensics analyst to piece together a report on the findings. All of the evidence needs to be carefully phrased and should only contain key issues that are relevant to that specific situation. The goal here is to put together everything that pertains to that case and will have the highest chance of success.

Usually, computer forensic services are utilized in a court of law. With this in mind, it’s imperative that a cyber forensics analyst is able to give an expert testimony on their findings. The computer forensic examination needs to be exact with its evidence and whoever is representing the forensics company needs to be well spoken, persuasive and extremely accurate with their testimony.

All of these services are important aspects of the computer forensics realm. Each area needs to be carried out in a very specific and careful way so no evidence is ever tampered with or mishandled. Each step of the process is just as important as the first which is why it takes many years of experience to be considered an expert in this field. Each project should be considered as valuable as the next and it’s not only important to maintain the services currently offered through computer forensics but to strive to stay on the cutting edge of technology and be able to combat anything that is new to the game.