Computers take part in a big role in the Criminal Justice Field. So far computers have allowed us to make it accessible for witnesses to go through and look for a suspect’s picture on the screen. Computers have enabled us to be able to do DNA testing. Which now only takes the labs a short time to process, and finding criminals from cases 15+ years ago can now be charged for their actions.
There are laptop computers in police vehicles; therefore, police officers can look up information right then and there instead of having to wait until they get back to the station. Some cars even have the wireless Internet connection that goes through satellite which allows them to do even greater things. Computers have also allowed the use of fingerprinting to expand. Agencies can now take someone’s fingerprints and send them through the computer and find out if they are linked to any other cases going on at the time, or any other cases in the past.
A computer forensic scientist or technician is still considered a cutting edge profession in the criminal justice field. With the increase of cybercrime, cyberterrorism, identity theft, and Internet child predators, computer forensic scientists are needed to track seemingly traceless criminals. Computer forensic scientists work with law enforcement officials, legal teams, independent companies and the government to conduct investigations, retrieve evidence and sometimes even testify in court.
Computer forensic scientists are in high demand because they need to have a very thorough, practical knowledge of computers, networks, hacking, data retrieval, information security, and computer surveillance, as well as criminal justice concepts like confidentiality, privacy laws, evidence handling and more. Generally, computer forensic scientists are supervised during their work by a forensic scientist, and they must have the ability to work well in stressful situations.
Depending on the casework, these professionals may also encounter irregular schedules and long overtime hours. The Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts that the job outlook for computer forensic investigators will be excellent for the next several years. This prediction is for self-employed investigators as well as those employed by a firm. Investigators who work on their own will enjoy more flexibility, but may make far less or far more than they would in a firm. Salary for self-employed investigators varies on their geographic location, experience and number of clients.
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Firms offer more stability and usually provide benefits like paid vacation and health insurance. The average salary reported in 2006 by the Bureau of Labor Statistics was $33,750 for private investigators, although those in the computer forensics field generally earn higher salaries. The median range for private investigators settled between $24,180 and $47,740. Computer forensic scientists and investigators are expected to be highly educated professionals, so a bachelor’s degree is required.
A Master’s degree in a field like computer science of criminal justice can be extremely beneficial to acquiring the top level jobs, as students in these programs will learn about all the cutting edge technologies, systems and concepts needed to succeed in computer forensics. A computer is a programmable machine designed to sequentially and automatically carry out a sequence of arithmetic or logical operations. The particular sequence of operations can be changed readily, allowing the computer to solve more than one kind of problem.
Conventionally a computer consists of some form of memory for data storage, at least one element that carries out arithmetic and logic operations, and a sequencing and control element that can change the order of operations based on the information that is stored. Peripheral devices allow information to be entered from external source, and allow the results of operations to be sent out. A computer’s processing unit executes series of instructions that make it read, manipulate and then store data.
Conditional instructions change the sequence of instructions as a function of the current state of the machine or its environment . The first electronic computers were developed in the mid-20th century (1940–1945). Originally, they were the size of a large room, consuming as much power as several hundred modern personal computers (PCs). Modern computers based on integrated circuits are millions to billions of times more capable than the early machines, and occupy a fraction of the space. Simple computers are small enough to fit into mobile devices, mobile computers can be powered by small batteries.
Personal computers in their various forms are icons of the Information Age and are what most people think of as “computers”. However, the embedded computers found in many devices from MP3 players to fighter aircraft and from toys to industrial robots are the most numerous. In the global village called the internet, not everyone plays nice. You always hear of the word “hack”. It is mostly used in relation to invading of computers. Most of these are not entirely true but computer network systems do get hacked. If and when it does happen, it usually involves something sinister.
Even employees of companies do engage in snooping or to use our favorite word, hacking. The birth of the internet has led to more of this. Anyone can be anything online. This is why fraud, phishing, and identity theft happen. The computer has become an important part of everyday life. Sending letters have been entirely changed by emails. Communications have been dominated by instant and text messaging. Portable storage devices that were an exclusive preserve of Information Technology professionals are now used by the general public.
I think you are already getting the idea of why computer forensics are needed. In the event that hacking does occur, the computer forensic will do the following: 1. Like any other investigation, the computer forensic must handle the area as a crime scene. He or she will take digital photographs and secure documentary evidence. This will include printouts, notes and disks in the scene. If you are the one who hired the computer forensic expert, you should leave everything to them. The computer system should be left as is whether it is turned on or off.
If the computer was left on, the analyst will gather all the information that he or she can from the running applications. The computer will then be shutdown in a way that the data will not be lost. Doing a standard shutdown or pulling the plug is not an option. Both of these methods may cause the loss or damage of the data in the computer system. 2. The forensic investigator must then document the configuration of the system as you would document a crime scene. This should include the order of hard drives, modem, LAN, storage subsystems, cable connections, and wireless networking hardware.
The analyst may make a diagram to go along with the digital photographs. They will also take portable storage devices within the area that may contain substantial evidence. 3. The computer forensic expert must take all the evidence to the lab. This is because the analyst should not examine the evidence in the same hardware. People who engage in cyber crimes are also aware that important data can be retrieved to convict them. Countermeasures, viruses and booby traps may be installed in the system to damage electronic evidence.
Analysts take the hard drive in their lab instead to make an exact duplicate of its contents. This process is called Imaging. Analysts have their own tools to make sure that the data is copied completely and accurately. The duplicate will then be verified by an algorithm. The data is then examined and analyzed. The analyst makes a report of his or her findings and the process that was taken during the investigation starting from the acquisition of the data. This evidence will be presented in court if prosecution is necessary.
Notable civil engineering projects, whose pioneers included Isambard Kingdom Brunel, contributed to the advancement of railway transport systems. Other advances pioneered in the UK include the marine chronometer, the jet engine, the modern bicycle, electric lighting, the steam turbine, the electromagnet, stereo sound, motion pictures, the screw propeller, the internal combustion engine, military radar, the electronic computer, photography, aeronautics, soda water, IVF, nursing, antiseptic surgery, vaccination and antibiotics.
Scientific journals produced in the UK include Nature, the British Medical Journal and The Lancet. In 2006 it was reported that the UK provided 9 percent of the world’s scientific research papers and a 12 per cent share of citations, the second highest in the world after the US. In the 1950s the UK had more Physics Nobel Prizes than any other nation, despite its relatively small size.
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