What Does a Computer Forensics Analyst Do?

Basic Computer Forensics Analyst Duties:

The economy is struggling and jobs are hard to find. One field that is thriving is computer forensics which is, essentially, the discovery of data on electronic devices. A computer forensics analyst can have a lucrative and rewarding career involving many areas.

Many people think that just because you delete something off of your computer, or other device, that it’s gone forever. This is not true and more people are finding this out the hard way.

Minor cases that require the help of a computer forensics analyst include civil cases where an employer may want to monitor the daily activities of their employees to see how much company time is being wasted.

Email was the first thing introduced into office life that was later found to be a huge waste of time, while people are on the clock. It is still an extremely efficient and easy way to communicate in the work place but as more people own Blackberry’s and iPhone’s it has become a large scale issue among employers. Up to 50%, or more, of a work day can easily be wasted by emailing friends.

Another civil use for a computer forensics analyst includes spending too much time surfing the internet. Almost all companies have internet access that is supposed to be used for work purposes only. The fact of the matter is that a large percentage of internet time at work is actually for personal use.

If a company is suffering from these problems they call a digital forensics analyst. These professionals are able to come in and set up a program that can monitor one or all computers, on a server or within a company, and can pin point directly where the abuse is coming from. They can determine information such as who is logging in, what sites they are visiting and what kind of pictures or messages are being sent over email. All of this information is readily available to a trained professional.

Experienced Computer Forensics Analyst Duties:

As analyst’s gain more experience they typically move on to providing their services to law enforcement agencies. The police often use computer forensics to solve cases that involve computer or phone records. They may have an in house task force that is well trained in this area or they will outsource the work to forensics professionals that have a proven track record in solving cases.

During litigation a good computer forensics analyst will be able to give a thorough report on their findings and able to point out the relevance to the case. All pertinent information will be accessed and fully analyzed and when it’s time for their testimony they must be concise, clear and provide all information that will benefit the case. For this reason it is unlikely for the police, or any other agency, will hire an analyst without several years of experience in this realm.

A career as a computer forensics analyst is one of challenge and reward. You must have an eye for detail and a large amount of patience. It is very time consuming work, but as you become a seasoned professional you will be very satisfied as you are constantly gaining valuable knowledge.