As cyber breaches continue to run riot and proliferate, governmental and non-governmental organizations continue to grapple in an attempt to find a long-lasting solution to the seemingly out-of-control menace.
No single day passes by without an organization falling victim to a cyber-attack. According to a Clark School study of the University of Maryland, there is a cyber-breach on average every 39 seconds. Legislators are coming up with laws and policies to help curb cybercrimes from spiraling to uncontrollable levels.
Digital forensics has become a critical enforcement mechanism used to tackle cyber insecurities. As you might have realized, digital devices are quickly evolving.
This impacts the digital forensics community that comes in to deal with the rising cases of digital crimes. This article will explain the concept of digital forensics and why it is so critical in cybersecurity.
What Is Digital Forensics
Digital forensics refers to applying scientific and investigative principles in identifying, extracting, and documenting evidence found in digital media such as mobile phones, Global Positioning Systems (GPSs) servers, storage media, and computers. The evidence is then used to solve computer-related crimes.
Digital forensics dates back to the time when computers were invented. Significant milestones have been covered and advances made in this field. Its evolution can be explained by the changing security needs and prevalence of computer crimes.
It is also important to note that digital forensics is not only limited to the investigation of cybercrimes. It is a dynamic tool that can also solve corporate challenges and problems.
For instance, digital forensics can be used from a corporate setting to recover lost data and files and reconstruct information and data from a damaged device. Digital forensics can also test for changes in equipment that are subject to stimulus.
Do you know the Difference: Digital Forensics & Cyber Security?
Cybersecurity and digital security are two critical concepts to anyone who uses any form of technology. As an internet user or an owner of any computer device, you should be well conversant with the two terms.
They both play active roles in ensuring security and privacy over the internet. Although the two play almost similar roles, they do not mean the same thing.
Digital Forensics is majorly concerned with investigating a device or data, especially in a court of law, to determine the case of someone under interrogation for committing a cybercrime. Digital Forensics is all about bringing someone to justice for the cybercrimes committed. Complex tools and techniques are used to recover information and data lost.
Cybersecurity is majorly concerned with the measures, tools, procedures, protocols, and techniques used to protect computer resources from hackers and cyber breaches. Cybersecurity is all about preventing cyber-attacks.
Benefits of Digital Forensics on Cyber Security
1. Prevent Hackers and Hijackers
Digital forensics has been able to uncover existing loopholes in networks and computer systems that have been the primary sources of cyber-attacks.
When such loopholes are exposed, cyber techs then develop more secure technology that seals these loopholes, thereby preventing hackers and hijackers from accessing the system.
By closely looking at the trends used by cybercriminals to access networks, digital forensics has dramatically impacted the prevention of cyber-attacks.
2. Prevent Viruses
One of the significant developments attributed to digital forensic is the anti-virus software.
Digital forensics will scan a system to establish how malware spreads through the system. Hackers usually use emails or corrupt files to spread viruses into a network.
Digital forensics usually establishes these files and emails. The organization can then design its anti-malware software to pay attention to corrupted emails and files that could lead to a potential cyber-attack.
Additional, anti-malware software developed from digital forensics information can detect and remove any form of malware attacks before it spreads to other components within a system.
3. Recover Deleted Information
Data recovery is crucial, especially when the data is used in essential operations. After a successful cyber breach, a business might be on the brink of collapsing if it loses the necessary data required to run it.
Digital forensics helps in data recovery. It uses complex tools and techniques to recover the lost information needed in the courts.
Although digital forensics will retrieve the information to aid in court cases, the owners will also benefit from the recovered data. Even in the absence of a court case, digital forensics allows cybersecurity to use similar tools to recover lost files.
4. Identifying areas of Weakness and Vulnerabilities
It is usually challenging for a computer owner to discover loopholes in his system.
The weakness areas are generally not apparent, making it easy for cybercriminals to conduct their malicious acts without difficulty.
Digital forensics helps compile pieces of helpful information that identify these loopholes and areas of weakness. After they have been discovered, it will then be the work of cybersecurity to fix the loopholes and repair the areas of weaknesses.
One of the major weaknesses that hackers usually exploit is passwords. A cybercriminal will undertake a study about his potential target and then use brute force attacks to guess his passwords. The best practice will be to avoid using passwords that have something to do with your personal life, such as your birthday or the name of your pet.
Keeping these passwords confidential is crucial to the general well-being of your systems. Digital forensics has discovered that most business employees access data repositories and information they do not need. This has led to insider cyberattacks brewed by employees of the organization.
Improving Your Cybersecurity
Understanding how digital forensics and cybersecurity work to prevent the many cases of privacy intrusions and data breaches over the internet is crucial.
Digital forensics has played a significant role in the improvement of cybersecurity. Brace yourself to see even more progress.
By discovering weaknesses in the systems and giving information about security concerns related to computer systems, digital forensics has made it easier for businesses and organizations to implement cybersecurity.
Although digital forensics is so crucial, my advice is that we should not wait for it to implement cybersecurity. Cybersecurity should remain a personal initiative.
Businesses, government agencies, and individuals should take it upon themselves to ensure that proper cybersecurity measures are installed to ensure that they remain safe.
Today, thanks to relentless cybersecurity gurus, we have proper protocols and tools that play a huge role in strengthening cybersecurity. Firewalls, SSL certificates, anti-malware software, password managers, and cloud storage systems are big cybersecurity players.
You must install these tools to be on the safer side. If you wish to secure your client and server communications, installing an SSL certificate would be your best bet, as it encrypts the in-transit data securing it from the prying eyes of scamsters.
Do not wait for digital forensics to come to your aid. By the time it does, you will already be a victim of a successful cyberattack.
Cybersecurity and digital forensics go in hand. Cybersecurity would not be where it is if it were not for the information that digital forensics provides.
The two are crucial subjects that every computer owner should take his time and learn about.
Cybersecurity depends on the recommendations given by digital forensics to develop measures that prevent cyber risks.
Digital forensics exists to rectify failures of cybersecurity. The two, therefore, mutually coexists to ensure that information is kept safe and out of reach by cyber intruders.
In this article, I have explained the two concepts, how they relate, how they differ, and why they are essential in computer security.