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The Digital Detective - E-Investigators as a Service

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The practice of forensics has been present ever since ancient ages. Forensics was performed on Crime involving human crime and financial crimes. Over the ages due to significant achievements in technology and implementation of technology for business, a new series of crimes have taken birth known as digital crimes.

These digital crimes are performed by an individual with a malicious intent of obtaining resources or destroying resources using unfair and illegal means in an electronic environment.

This article stresses on the need for Digital Forensic Investigators.

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The Digital Detective - E-Investigators as a Service

  1. 1. THE DIGITAL INVESTIGATOR Bharath Rao | mailme@bharathraob.ccom Digital Forensics as an emerging area of Service. Digital Forensics has been gaining popularity under the existing consulting line of professionals. Digital forensics is the new field which was introduced and is now provided by Management Consultants recently. This leads to us to believe only one thing, on account of spurt in digitisation of operations the need for digital forensics also has been increasing at an extremely fast pace. Why is there a sudden demand for Digital Forensics? The huge demand for digital forensics is being explained as follows – Preservation of evidence for the court of law – Digital Forensics is primarily performed as an engagement not merely to dig in the hidden or corrupted data however also intended to retrieve and present conclusive evidence to the court of law. The very drawback of information stored in electronic or a magnetic media is that there are very easy to be manipulated and changed. Therefore digital forensics has a bigger objective of preserving the integrity of the data that is written on the media for the court of law at the time of occurrence of the digital crime. Data Recovery and Analysis - Data Recovery and analysis is the most challenging part in the life cycle of digital forensics. Data is stored in magnetic layered media and it can be easily over written, manipulated and corrupted. Data Recovery is performed in a special lab where the hardware would be treated for recovery of raw data. Data Recovery is also the most longest and the expensive phase of Digital Forensics. Analysis of the raw data is the next phase of digital forensics. Analysis is usually done by generally running an algorithm which looks for patterns and readily available data on the raw image of the hard-disk. The data would have to be preserved for its integrity. Analysis of data is a challenging task given the condition of the data and the situation which is prevailing at the time of analysis of the data. Parental Concerns – Internet is very open and dangerous and parents have huge concerns on the information that is being exposed to their children. Terrorism, Pornography, Drugs, Trafficking and Unknown scammers make internet a very dangerous place for children. Children are vulnerable and exposed on the internet. Parents use the help of investigators to find out and track the internet that is being accessed by children and would like to provide protected and guided access to the internet. Increase in digital crimes on the internet and in corporate environment – Digital Espionage is on the rise on the internet and on the Corporate Environment. Hacking, Data theft, Fake Data, Spyware, Remote Access Trojans and many more are being spread on all networks with the following objectives –  Data Theft  Destruction of data  Manipulation of Data Information being the most expensive the resource at today’s digital era, one cannot afford any loss of data. Digital forensics would help in figuring out the nature and extent of the data breach that is occurred. Secondly Digital Forensics would help in finding out the extent of which the data that have been manipulated, stolen and destroyed. Finally, digital forensics would be used in finding out “bread crumbs” which would be used to find out the trail used by the attacker while intruding the network.
  2. 2. Intrusion on Privacy of individuals – Applications like Google, Facebook etc. have invaded the lives of every individual. One needs to be very careful with his/her personally identifiable information on the internet in this era of free flowing digital information. If there is any misuse of the data that is being stored, the privacy laws (like HIPAA, SOX etc.) have stringent measures against individuals who have not taken sufficient measures to protect private data. Digital forensics would be used to find out the methods of storage and the security measures that had been incorporated by the data custodians in order to store the private data. Forensics in highly specialised areas of the IT Infrastructure – Since technology is changing on a daily basis, a Digital Forensic Investigator needs to keep himself updated of developments at all times. New Areas for committing fraud are being discovered. Some of them where an investigator can provide his services are given as below -  Computer forensics  Memory Forensics  Mobile Device Forensics – BB, Android, IOS  Network Forensics  Data Analysis  Database Forensics Digital Forensics is a growing toddler in the Management Consultancy Industry. Technological advancements, Regulatory Requirements, Data Integrity issues have led to the situation that there is huge opportunities and growth in the area of digital forensics. Hence professionals with an aptitude for information technology and analytical skills can take up the emerging professional opportunities as a Digital Forensic Investigator – which is both professionally satisfying and financially rewarding.

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