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What Is a Forensic Computer Technician?

Much like a forensic science technician deals with the physical evidence left behind at a crime scene, a forensic computer technician assists with computer-related crimes. To learn more about this field, continue reading.

Cybercrime and Forensic Computer Technicians

With digital information transferred 24/7 over the Internet, cyber crime is on the rise. Cyber criminals illegally intercept sensitive data, including medical records, bank routing numbers, or credit card information. When security is breached through unlawful system access, law enforcement agencies rely on forensic computer technicians to deconstruct the cyber-crime scene. Computers leave traces of digital information that can be as incriminating as fingerprints.

A forensic computer technician extracts this information from computers in an effort to curtail illegal activities. Using several techniques, methodologies and tools, they help law enforcement agencies to apprehend cyber criminals. In fact, the work performed by these professionals can be instrumental in bringing about criminal prosecution. Forensic computer technicians may perform the following tasks:

  • Extracting and collecting evidence from electronic sources
  • Documenting and preserving evidence
  • Examining evidence
  • Testing, researching, analyzing, and reporting findings

Important Facts About Forensic Computer Technicians

Median Salary (2019) $71,689*
Job Outlook (2016-2026)17% (Forensic Science Technicians)**
Key Skills Technological proficiency, Problem-solving, Critical decision-making
Work Environment Office setting
Similar Occupations Computer Forensics Director, Network Administrator, Security Analyst

Sources: *Payscale.com, **U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS)

Career Options

A number of technicians work for local, state, and federal law enforcement agencies. Some private companies also employ cyber investigators. The services of these professionals may also be needed by corporations who have experienced security breaches or attorneys who are preparing for cases.

Education Requirements

Technicians who work in computer forensics usually must be certified in several different areas and they should possess an aptitude for different types of software. To acquire personnel who can crack computer-related crimes, employers may seek these basic requirements:

  • Microsoft systems engineer certification
  • Completion of the Encase certification program
  • Knowledge in Solo-3 and Helix software and Logicube hardware
  • Certification as a computer forensic technician