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Computer Forensic Analyst

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Computer forensic analysts use specialised methods and techniques to recover and examine data from computer systems or digital storage devices. They present their findings, which can then be used as evidence in civil or criminal prosecutions involving computer-based, or cyber crime.

They are also known as Cyber security professionals.

The Work

You would use a variety of specialist computer programmes and methods to analyse and search for data on devices such as mobile phones, tablets or laptops or desktop computers.

You could be:

You could be involved in a wide variety of investigations including; industrial or commercial espionage (spying), commercial fraud, theft of undisclosed or confidential information by company employees, possession of illegal images or even bankruptcy cases.

Pay

The figures below are only a guide. Actual salaries may vary, depending on:

Starting salaries can be in the region of £21,000 a year. With experience this can rise to between £30,000 and £45,000 a year.

Some analysts can earn up to £80,000 a year or more.

Conditions

Workforce Employment Status

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Getting In

There are several routes into this career including a degree or qualification in an IT-related discipline, or a background in IT systems.

Prospects are good in this line of work, with major employers including the police forces and law enforcement agencies, and government departments and agencies, such as the Serious Fraud Office, MI5 and MI6. Private employers include IT security and specialist forensic computing companies, as well as banks and financial organisations.

You can find jobs advertised on specialist employment websites such as CyberSecurityJobsite.com.

Workforce Education Levels (UK)

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Job Outlook Scotland

Employment

Unemployment

Percentage of workforce registered as unemployed (Scotland)

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Job Outlook Scotland and UK

  Scotland
2019
2785
2.2 %
RISE
2024
2845
  United Kingdom
2019
41049
2.4 %
RISE
2024
42037

LMI data powered by EMSI UK

What Does it Take?

You need to have:

You need to be able to:

Training

Getting On

More Information

The term cyber security covers the security of the internet, telecommunications networks and computer systems. It is a fast developing area, with the UK cyber workforce having grown by 160% in 5 years (2016). 

As more organisations realise the importance of data protection due to their business relying on the internet and IT systems, the prospects for security professionals has never been better. According to the Tech Partnership, of all IT security jobs, the most commonly advertised in the UK is Security analyst, at 19%.

You should check out The Cyber Security Challenge website, a government and industry initiative encouraging involvement in the industry through competitions, and providing information on how to start a career in this ever evolving and growing area. 

TechFuture careers is also a good educational resource for IT careers.

Contacts

The following organisations may be able to provide further information.

BCS, The Chartered Institute for IT
Tel: 01793 417417
Website: http://www.bcs.org
Twitter: @bcs
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/IT.BCS/

Secret Intelligence Service MI6
Website: https://www.sis.gov.uk

Security Service MI5
Website: https://www.mi5.gov.uk/

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Career Area

Computing and ICT

Career Sectors

Computer Skills

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