Computer forensics specialists do more than just work in law enforcement, although most people automatically think of the police or FBI when they hear the word forensics. Quite a large number of digital forensics experts are actually working in the private sector for companies that need help because of computer fraud and theft. They will also work for other government agencies not directly related to law enforcement, and in some cases, they will work on their own by becoming a private consultant. The forensics expert will be able to help these companies and agencies in a variety of different ways.
One of the most common tasks for a computer forensics specialist working for a company is to retrieve data if software or hardware fails. Some IT professionals may be able to do this, but those who have experience in forensics will usually be able to find the data and recover it more quickly and in more instances. They also can find unauthorized entry into a network, and they will be able to determine how the person got into the system and what they did once they were there. The experts will be able to know if anything was stolen as well.
Digital forensics experts will be able to track down and gather evidence against employees who may be misusing computers or funneling data to competition on the network. Even when an employee tries to delete files and traces of their misdeeds, the evidence remains and the experts will be able to find it.
Another way that the specialists can help is by designing tests to check on the security of the system. They will be able to find any chinks in the armor and then come up with ways of fixing them.
As you can see, there are many different things that a computer forensics specialist can do beyond helping law enforcement.
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