How to Begin Your Computer Forensics Career
Computer forensics jobs are one of the fastest growing occupational fields today. Computer forensics is a somewhat new science that tackles cyber-crime, one of the fastest growing forms of crime in the world. It involves anything that uses a computer from money laundering to hacking and internet fraud among others. As computer crimes become faster and more evolved computer forensics must tackle these ever-growing cyber-crimes, as a result demand for computer forensic specialists is on the rise.
Making a career in computer forensics is ambitious and is a very competitive field to work in. You have to be the best of the best. But the three main things to start your computer forensics career are to first go through a program or get a degree in computer forensics. Second you need to pass the CCFE and get certified. Thirdly and most importantly you need work experience.
Degrees and Programs
There are many different places where you can get a degree or go through a program for computer forensics. One style of program is the boot-camp program which offers accelerated courses so that you can graduate faster. You can also take online courses but they lack in on-hands training. And last you could get a degree that would be useful in forensics, such as computer science, criminal justice and accounting.
To get certified in computer forensics you need to pass the CCFE. It is a 2-part certification process that starts with a 50 question test that you must complete in 2 hours. Before moving onto the second part of the certification process you must get a minimum of 80% correct on the exam portion. The second part is take-home. You have 60 days to write a report that could be used in a court of law. You write the report on investigational files from a mock case that will be given to you. Knowing how to write good reports is crucial since it is a big part of computer forensics.
Having a degree and a certificate may get you a job in computer forensics, but it may not pay well starting off. Experience develops your skills which are necessary for your career. You will be more valuable to agencies and employers by already having experience. A great way to gain experience and hone your skills is through hands- on training. Also, while you attend school offer your time to a local forensics company in exchange for work experience. Another place to get experience is internships. Many internships are not paid, but you will have a harder time getting your career going without any work experience.
When you are certified, have formal training to back you up and valuable experience you will be able to begin your computer forensics career smoothly. You will be able to get a job with a higher salary, but you will also have a better chance at becoming a specialist. By following these three steps you can be a part of the growing field of computer forensics.