Basic Responsibilities of Computer Forensics
Not that long ago, computers did not use to be that common. They were considered monolithic devices that were operated by trained technicians and were kept separately in an environment with controlled climate. Back then, only large companies and corporations, businesses and governments used to own computers and only they had enough money to hire professionals who could operate them.
In today’s world, computers are considered an omnipresent part of everyday life. The calculators and gaming systems being used today have a lot more computing power and storage capacity as compared to those giant computers.
Since computers are so common these days, the quantity of corporate, personal and governmental data that is stored on these devices keeps increasing with every minute that passes. Security and safety measures do not always continue to be up to date with the most advanced technology, and thus, digital media is frequently considered a significant part of criminal investigation processes. The serious nature of most of the data that is saved on these devices has generated the requirement for a novel science that is known as digital forensics and sometimes, computer forensics.
This science is a subdivision of forensic sciences that consists of investigation, recovery and scrutiny of data that is stored on devices like computers, smart phones and other media devices used for storage purposes in such a way that all the results are permitted to be presented in the court as evidence. It can also be used to find out the extent and nature of illegal and unauthorized digital intrusions.
The basic goal is to safeguard the evidence in its original form while performing a controlled and prepared investigation. This investigation process normally includes seizure, imaging, analysis of media, and the creation of a statement that includes all the findings. This investigation is highly structured and needs to preserve a chain of proper evidence that documents everything in detail. This helps in finding out what exactly happened and who should be considered responsible for the happening.
There should also be a custody chain to make sure that the information and data that is collected is in no way tampered or altered. Data that is collected in an incorrect manner can be useless for the overall investigation process.
The first thing that should be done is the preservation of the crime scene. This can be done by making a separate copy of all the hard disks and other memory devices. This helps in the preservation of the device’s state right after the crime without it being stopped from being used further. After the preservation of data, the investigation process can be progressed.
During investigations of Digital Forensic sort, precise steps and practices are followed that require an advanced level of technological proficiency to access, protect, and examine the data and also to eradicate any threat of data spoliation. Only skilled professionals, who possess advanced IT knowledge, are trusted to handle procedures of such sort. This guarantees that the data collected can be acknowledged as evidence in the court.