MSc Forensic Computing and Cybercrime Investigation

Academic Year 2019/2020

Graduate Taught (level 9 nfq, credits 90)

This is a programme for law enforcement. It aims to provide high quality forensic computing and cybercrime investigation training and formal education. It is also designed to deliver cutting-edge, up-to-date cybercrime investigation techniques, strategies and tactics that allow students to understand and tackle emerging trends in cybercrime. Over the past 12 years we brought in specialists from around the world to review and advise on the content considering the needs of digital forensic investigators and computer crime specialists. The UCD School of Computer Science (CS) and UCD Centre for Cybersecurity and Cybercrime Investigation (CCI) are working closely with law enforcement agencies and industry practitioners in seeking solutions to technologies-related crime. CS and CCI staff also collaborate with the scientists from European Cybercrime Training and Educational Group at Europol (ECTEG) to work on applied research and developing forensic tools and then to transfer high impact research achievements and efficient, free forensic tools to the law enforcement community. This programme is delivered by experienced academics from CS and CCI and also by experts who are leaders, managers and heads of forensic departments in law enforcement agencies and in industry..

Download the course brochure (pdf)

A wide range of modules is available at beginner and advanced levels. On successful completion of the programme, depending on the module taken, students will be able to:

  • Understand methods used to conduct forensic analysis of digital devices including computer systems and mobile devices
  • Identify, collect, process, analyse and present digital forensics evidence
  • Use common network investigation techniques
  • Develop critical thinking in anaylsing and performing cybercrime investigation
  • Research and develop custom tools for evidence analysis
  • Work in groups to resolve computer forensic challenges
  • Understand the cybercrime business model and how to perform the financial fraud investigations
  • Conduct research into novel forensic and cybercrime investigation problems
  • Investigate cases of child sexual exploitation on the Internet
  • Tackle the forensic analysis of future technologies (both hardware and software) through the development of new applications.

Careers & Employability

In the past 12 years, over 1100 law enforcement officers from 62 countries and have studied on this programme.  For law enforcement officers, having this qualification has the advantage of adding credibility to their testimony as expert witnesses. Career development possibilities are excellent. Graduates include senior staff at Europol and INTERPOL, members of national and regional police forces and police training colleges, government ministries and agencies with LE powers, defence forces, specialist cybercrime agencies, revenue, customs and border protection. Our graduate community is one of the benefits of the course. Contact us if you'd like to speak to a graduate about their experience.

Curricular information is subject to change


Full Time option suitable for:

Domestic(EEA) applicants: Yes
International (Non EEA) applicants currently residing outside of the EEA Region. Yes

Part Time option suitable for:

Domestic(EEA) applicants: Yes
International (Non EEA) applicants currently residing outside of the EEA Region. Yes

This programme is open to members of LAW ENFORCEMENT AGENCIES ONLY. This includes employees of any organisation that has responsibility for the enforcement of national or local legislation including but not limited to: Police Forces, International law enforcement organisations (Europol, Interpol, etc), Fisheries, Border control, Immigration, Tax/Revenue & Customs, Regulatory enforcement, Military (Army, Navy, Air Force etc). The programme is flexible enough to accomodate both experts and beginners in the field of digital forensics and cybercrime investigation..

This is a programme for law enforcement. This programme aims to provide high quality forensic computing and cybercrime investigation training and formal education. It is also designed to deliver cutting-edge, up-to-date cybercrime investigation techniques, strategies and tactics that allow students to understand and tackle emerging trends in cybercrime. (Purposes). Over the past 12 years we have brought in specialists from around the world to review and advise on the content considering the needs of digital forensic investigators and computer crime specialists. The UCD School of Computer Science (CS) and UCD Centre for Cybersecurity and Cybercrime Investigation (CCI) have been working closely with law enforcement agencies and industry practitioners in seeking solutions to technologies-related crime. CS and CCI staff also collaborate with the scientists from European Cybercrime Training and Educational Group at Europol (ECTEG) to work on applied research and developing forensic tools and then transfer both high impact research achievement and efficient, free forensic tools to the students. This programme is delivered by not only the experienced academia staff from CS and CCI but also the experts who are leaders, managers, heads of forensic department in law enforcement agencies and industries. Besides, with a modular structure and part-time options, students can combine study with full-time work and family commitments. (Values). The programme structure fosters and encourages close liaison between students, so graduates leave not only having required skills for all cybercrime investigating services but also an excellent international network of contacts for the future. (Learning outcomes). All lectures are pre-recorded and provided online via a virtual online learning environment, allowing students to participate from their house or office. All modules consist of continuous formative assessment components assessing core practical skills and culminate in a written summative assessment final exam. Students attend UCD exam centres only for examinations each year. Students will graduate with a UCD MSc when (s)he has achieved 90 credits. (Approaches to teaching learning and assessment)..

  • Understand methods used to conduct forensic analysis of digital devices including computer systems and mobile devices
  • Identify, collect, process, analyse and present digital forensics evidence
  • Develop critical thinking in anaylsing and performing cybercrime investigation
  • Use common network investigation techniques
  • Research and develop custom tools for evidence analysis
  • Work in group to resolve computer forensic challenges
  • Understand cybercrime business model and how to perform the financial fraud investigation
  • Conduct research into novel forensic and cybercrime investigation problems
  • Perform the financial fraud investigation
  • Tackle the forensic analysis of future technologies (both hardware and software) through the development of new applications
  • Investigate cases of child sexual exploitation on the Internet
  • Conduct research into novel forensic and cybercrime investigation problems
  • Develop critical thinking in anaylsing and performing cybercrime investigation
  • Identify, collect, process, analyse and present digital forensics evidence
  • Investigate cases of child sexual exploitation on the Internet
  • Perform the financial fraud investigation
  • Research and develop custom tools for evidence analysis
  • Tackle the forensic analysis of future technologies (both hardware and software) through the development of new applications
  • Understand cybercrime business model and how to perform the financial fraud investigation
  • Understand methods used to conduct forensic analysis of digital devices including computer systems and mobile devices
  • Use common network investigation techniques
  • Work in group to resolve computer forensic challenges

View All Modules Here

Course content and the flexible mode of delivery are designed to suit busy working professionals located all over the world.

Modules available

There are two core modules and a further thirteen elective taught modules. Students are recommended to take the core modules and then select further modules, according to their interests and experience. Please look at the detailed module descriptions for pre-requisites, learning outcomes, assessment scheme and workload.  It is not mandatory to do a dissertation - the MSc may be completed with taught modules only. Graduate Diploma and Graduate Certificate options are also available. It is possible to take single modules as CPD.

Computer Forensics COMP40100
Network Investigations COMP40110
Programming for Investigators COMP40120
Case Studies COMP40150
Research Project in Forensic Computing and Cyber Crime Investigation COMP40160
Linux for Investigators COMP41430
Advanced Scripting COMP41570
VoIP and Wireless Investigations COMP41580
Advanced Computer Forensics COMP41590
Malware Investigations COMP41650
Live Data Forensics COMP41660
Data & Database Forensics COMP47370
Advanced Malware Analysis COMP47380
Online Fraud Investigations for Irish Law Enforcement COMP47420
Mobile Devices Investigation COMP47430
Legislation COMP47440
Financial Fraud Investigation COMP47450
Financial Investigation Techniques - Following the Money COMP47510
OSINT Collection & Analysis COMP47630
Online Child Abuse Investigations COMP47640

Course delivery

Lectures are pre-recorded and provided online via a virtual online learning environment. Exercises, reading and assignments and projects are conducted online and in our virtual labs. Students are required to come to Dublin, or another UCD exam centre for approx. 5-10 days each year to complete examinations and workshops. All modules are examined in May each year in Dublin, Netherlands and the USA.  We also hold optional exams in Dublin in December for our semester one modules..

MSc Forensic Computing and Cybercrime Investigation (T025) Part Time
EU/NONEU    fee per year - € 4680

MSc Forensic Computing and Cybercrime Investigation (T146) Full Time
EU          fee per year - € 9364
nonEU    fee per year - € 9364

***Fees are subject to change

Tuition fee information is available on the UCD Fees website.  The cost of examination trips is not included in the tuition fee and students are expected to support themselves while attending examinations and other events. Tuition fees are the same for EU and non-EU students..

As well as being restricted to members of LAW ENFORCEMENT (LE) organisations, applicants are normally expected to be working in an investigative role. Law enforcement includes any organisation that has responsibility for the enforcement of national or local legislation including but not limited to:
Local, National, or Federal Police Forces
International Police organisations (Europol, Interpol, etc)
Fisheries
Revenue & Customs
Military
Applicants to the M.Sc. / Grad. Diploma / Grad. Certificate programme should have 5 years experience in LE. If they have less than 5 years experience in LE, applicants should have a degree in computing / policing studies / related discipline; 
OR 
2 years LE experience in Digital Forensics / Cybercrime Investigation role.
If they do not meet the above criteria, candidates may apply to do single modules as CPD (F001). Each applicant will be assessed on a case by case basis.

 

As well as UCD faculty, lecturers for this programme include subject experts from industry and law enforcement.

The following entry routes are available:

MSc Forensic Computing and Cybercrime Investigation Sept FT (T146)
Duration
1 Years
Attendance
Full Time
Deadline
Rolling *
MSc Forensic Computing and Cybercrime Investigation Sept PT (T025)
Duration
2 Years
Attendance
Part Time
Deadline
Rolling *

* Courses will remain open until such time as all places have been filled, therefore early application is advised