Digital Forensics and Cybersecurity Programs

 

D4CS: Digital Forensics and Cybersecurity


John Jay College of Criminal Justice meets the challenges of fighting cybercrime by providing professional science education in digital forensic science and cybersecurity with concern for justice. D4CS, the Digital Forensics and Cybersecurity Program, offers a Master of Science in Digital Forensics and Cybersecurity degree (formerly an M.S. in Forensic Computing) and two certificate programs: CSIBridge: Computer Science for Digital Forensics Certificate and CAD4SCI: Certificate in Applied Digital Forensic Science.

    Master of Science in Digital Forensics and Cybersecurity
    The Master of Science in Digital Forensics and Cybersecurity degree program offers a balance of practice and theory through study in computer science, law and criminal justice. The goal is to produce professionals qualified as digital forensic scientists who can apply and sustain their expertise as new technological and societal challenges emerge, who understand the scientific, legal and criminal justice context of high technology crime, and who can effectively communicate their knowledge to others.

      NOTE: The degree name and degree requirements that appear here are effective Fall 2012. Students who matriculated prior to Fall 2012 may choose to graduate under the requirements for the M.S. in Forensic Computing that were in effect when they matriculated or under the revised degree name and requirements.

    CSIBridge: Computer Science for Digital Forensics Certificate
    CSIBridge is designed for college graduates who lack the computer science background required to qualify for the degree program. It offers intensive graduate level courses intended to provide the essential computer science needed to study digital forensic science with a theoretical foundation. It is suited for those who wish to qualify for the Master of Science program or for someone who just wishes to learn or review basic computer science.

    CAD4SCI: Certificate in Applied Digital Forensic Science
    The CAD4SCI or Certificate in Applied Digital Forensic Science program entails four courses from the Master of Science degree program plus a practical exam. It is available to graduate students in computer science and related fields, to people with masters degrees in computer science or related fields, and to graduates who have a computer science background along with professional experience who would like specialized training in digital forensic science short of a degree. Award of this certificate recognizes the attainment of both an academic foundation in digital forensic science and a capacity to resourcefully and creatively apply that foundation to practical forensic and security challenges using scientific methods and to effectively communicate their findings to others.

     

Who We Are

  • D4CS Program Director: Professor Richard Lovely
  • D4CS faculty are full-time professors who are computer scientists, legal scholars or social scientists with a supporting cast of adjuncts who are working professionals.
  • We are small selective program with 45 or so students, a mix of mid-career and sworn personnel with recent graduates, who attend both full and part time. They are from New York and beyond with most working in IT or other fields, all dedicated to beginning a career in digital forensics and cybersecurity.
  • All courses are offered on-campus, typically on Monday through Thursday evenings to accommodate working students.
  • Small classes enable students to build strong ties with each other and faculty.
  • Students often work with faculty on research projects.
  • Courses move from theory to practice with hands on lab work.
  • Internships and cooperative education are key elements of the program.

 

Who We Seek

  • Computer science graduates who are interested in combining the study of forensic computer science with criminal justice.
  • Non-computer science graduates willing and able to study the essential computer science required for the program.
  • Public and private sector practitioners who wish to upgrade their expertise by studying the science beneath the tools they use in their work. (Up to six equivalency credits are available to practitioners.)
  • Law enforcement personnel and veterans who seek to move into cyber investigations and digital forensics.
  • Experienced information technology specialists or those from related fields who wish to make a career shift.

 

What Our Graduates Do

    Equipped with their multi-faceted education in forensics, computer science, law and criminal justice, our versatile graduates pursue a variety of career paths in digital forensics, cybersecurity and information assurance, such as:

      • cyber investigators,
      • special agents with federal agencies,
      • digital forensic analysts,
      • eDiscovery specialists,
      • lab managers,
      • educators,
      • information security (INFOSEC) specialists,
      • cyber incident analyst responders,
      • cybersecurity analysts,
      • computer security,
      • network security analysts,
      • information assurance consultants.
      • forensic computing product research and development,
      • doctoral training in related fields.

 


 

ABOUT PROGRAM ADMISSIONS

Academic Preparation for the MS Degree

    Admission to the Master of Science in Forensic Computing degree program requires knowledge of core computer science and the capacity to be successful in graduate courses in computer science, law and criminal justice.

    • Students may have had any undergraduate major but need to have knowledge of core computer science typically gained in undergraduate courses in computer science including: knowledge of programming, data structures, algorithms, operating systems, computer networks, and discrete math.
    • Graduates with computer science or related degrees usually meet these requirements although those long removed from their studies might benefit from a refresher.
    • Those who need to gain or refresh the required computer science background may do so through CSIBridge, our graduate preparatory program.

 

Admission for Those Who Need Preparation

    Candidates who need to gain the computer science background required for admission may do so through CSIBridge, our Computer Science for Digital Forensics Certificate Program, a graduate level preparatory program.

    Alternatively, candidates may gain the required computer science background either by taking an approved set of undergraduate computer science courses or by earning a score on the ETS subject test in computer science that demonstrates mastery of core computer science. Applicants who do not have a computer science or related degree may consult with the program director to determine the method of qualification that best suits them.

    Except for the computer science background, admission requirements for CSIBridge are similar to those for the degree program with evidence of aptitude to succeed in graduate computer science courses based on success in academic work in math, science or information technology, technical training or experience.


Admission to CAD4SCI

    Admission to CAD4SCI, Applied Digital Forensics Certificate program, requires a background in computer science. Degree holders and current students of graduate computer science programs are presumed to have this background. Admission to CAD4SCI does not carry any presumption of admission to the Master of Science degree program.

    • Those with a graduate degree in computer science or related field may apply to pursue the CAD4SCI by sending an email of intent to the D4CS Program Director.
    • D4CS degree students do not need to apply for admission to CAD4SCI as the certificate program is an integrated part of their degree program.
    • Current students from other CUNY graduate computer science or related programs may take CAD4SCI courses using the ePermit system. They first need to gain permission from their academic adviser and then advise the D4CS Program Director of their interest by an emailed letter.
    • Current students in non-CUNY graduate computer science or related program are welcome to apply to CAD4SCI although the extent to which John Jay credits may count toward their degree program at their home institution is their responsibility to determine. To apply, send an email with a statement of intent to the D4CS Program Director.

 

What We Look For

    Admission decisions for all D4CS programs are based on a holistic assessment of an applicant's evident potential to succeed in graduate computer science, law and criminal justice coursework. In addition to the college's general admissions requirements, the following guidelines and required materials apply to applicants to D4CS programs:

    Applicants with a Bachelor's Degree

    • Transcripts from all institutions of higher learning attended.
    • GRE's.
    • Academic factors favoring admission include an undergraduate GPA of 3.0 or better, GRE verbal and math scores above the median, and a GRE analytical writing score of 4.0 or better.

    Applicants with a Graduate or Professional Degree

    • Transcripts from the undergraduate degree granting institution and from all graduate or professional work.
    • Either GRE's or a substantial written product from graduate work and evidence of a capacity to succeed in graduate computer science coureses. 

    For All Applicants

    • Three letters of reference and a personal statement.
    • Applicants who have been enrolled in college or graduate courses within the past two years are expected to submit academic references.
    • CSIBridge candidates should show potential to succeed in computer science courses through such assets as math GRE scores or prior success in math and science courses.
    • Practitioners and other mid-career applicants should submit a resume with their application.
    • Applicants who lack one or more of the factors favoring admission but who have other mitigating assets may be admitted with conditions.

 


 

ABOUT PROGRAM REQUIREMENTS

Master of Science in Digital Forensics and Cybersecurity


Requirements for the degree program consist of 33 total credits for students who do a thesis and/or attain the CAD4SCI (Certificate in Applied Digital Forensic Science). Alternatively, 39 total credits are required with the six additional credits selected from the designated Forensic and Security or Criminal Justice electives .

See College Bulletin for course descriptions.


    Required Courses

    Subtotal: 15 credits

    FCM 710 Architecture of Secure Operating Systems
    FCM 742 Network Security
    CRJ/FCM 752 Law and High Technology Crime
    FCM 753 Digital Forensics Applications
    FCM 760 Forensic Management of Digital Evidence

    Forensic and Security Electives (Take at least three)

    Subtotal: 9 credits

    FCM 700 Theoretical Foundations of Computing Security
    FCM/FOS 705 Mathematical Statistics for Forensic Science
    FCM 740 Data Communications and Forensics Security
    FCM 745 Network Forensics

    Criminal Justice Electives (Take at least one)

    Subtotal: 3 credits

    CRJ 708 Law, Evidence and Ethics
    CRJ/FCM 727 Cybercriminology
    CRJ 733 Constitutional Law
    CRJ/PAD 750 Security of Information and Technology

    Graduate Elective

    Subtotal: 3 credits

    Any course in the graduate catalog
    (except for FCM 708 or FCM 709)
    to include the above electives.
    or
    FCM 787/788/789 Cooperative Education (1-3 credits)

    Capstone Options (Choose at least one)

    Subtotal: 3 credits

    Capstone Fieldwork + CAD4SCI
    Capstone Fieldwork

    Total: 33 credits
    Total: 39 credits*

           FCM 780 Capstone Seminar and Fieldwork

    Applied Research Project + CAD4SCI
    Applied Research Project

    Total: 33 credits
    Total: 39 credits*

           FCM 791 FCM Prospectus Seminar

    Thesis

    Total: 33 credits

           FCM 791 FCM Prospectus Seminar


    * Requires six additional credits from Forensic and Security or Criminal Justice electives.

    Applied Digital Forensic Science Certification Exam.

    The Applied Digital Forensic Science Certification Exam balances the role of theory and practice in the program of study by challenging students to prove their capacity to use computer science to address practical problems in digital forensics and cybersecurity. The exam is optional for degree students but is required to qualify for the Capstone Fieldwork Option and the CAD4SCI. A grade of Low Pass or better is required to qualify for Capstone Fieldwork. A grade of Pass or better is required to qualify for the CAD4SCI. Students in the degree program may take the exam upon completion of FCM 710, FCM 742 and FCM 760, although is it advisable to wait until completion of FCM 745. The exam is administered by the faculty and usually offered twice a year. Students have two chances to be graded on the exam but may withdraw once before grading.

CSIBridge: Computer Science for Digital Forensics

The certificate program entails four courses (12 credits) offered at the graduate level. The first two are intensive semester long foundations courses that provide a survey of core computer science tailored to digital forensics. One foundations course considers operating systems, computer architecture and networks while the other covers programming and math essentials. The two foundations courses are followed by two core courses in the degree program. Students who complete these four courses with grades of B or better receive a Certificate and may apply for transfer to the degree program.

    CSIBridge Certificate

    Total: 12 credits

    FCM 708 Foundations for Digital Forensics I*
    FCM 709 Foundations for Digital Forensics II*
    FCM 710 Architecture of Secure Operating Systems
    FCM 742 Network Security * Preparatory course that does not count toward the M.S. degree


CAD4SCI: Certificate in Applied Digital Forensic Science

The CAD4SCI program of study provides four graduate computer science courses (12 credits) on the science of digital forensics followed by a practical Applied Digital Forensic Science Certification Exam. These courses blend study of theory and method with practical hands-on application. The certificate is awarded to students who complete the four courses with grades of B or better and who score a grade of Pass or better on the exam.

    CAD4SCI Certificate

    Total: 12 credits

    FCM 710 Architecture of Secure Operating Systems
    FCM 742 Network Security
    FCM 745 Network Foresnics
    FCM 760 Forensic Management of Digital Evidence