Computer forensics and cybersecurity are two closely related fields. Experts in both of these fields can assist investigators during active investigations, helping to analyze cyber data and providing valuable evidence that helps determine a defendant’s guilt or innocence.
They focus on a similar goal: protecting digital assets. Cybersecurity and computer forensics methodologies can be used as effective strategies in virtually any field to ensure forensic data is used only for a particular purpose.
Both fields also include data recovery strategies to help recover forensic data that might have been lost during a security breach, device damage or another issue.
Though similar, these career fields are characterized by a few key differences. While cybersecurity focuses on the prevention of theft, fraud and other kinds of forensic data loss, computer forensics is primarily concerned with data that has already been misused.
Cybersecurity teams work diligently to prevent threats from materializing. For example, they might segment networks, integrate two-factor authentication and require regular password changes to minimize risks. However, sometimes bad actors access protected data without permission.
When data is misused, computer forensics experts go to work. Using a variety of different data access and recovery strategies, these professionals work to recover forensic data without further harming it. Their findings are useful as evidence in criminal or civil trials, in addition to the value that any recovered data provides.