New Masters degree in security and digital forensics

13 Aug 2009

Ireland is to benefit from the creation of a new Masters degree in security and digital forensics that has been inspired by the rising tide of cybercrime. 98pc of all Irish organisations have experienced incidents cybercrime.

The Institute of Technology in Blanchardstown has launched a Masters in Science in Computing in Information Security and Digital Forensics to provide students with an all round perspective on information security risk and proper management.

It also covers the steps in conducting a digital forensics investigation where evidence may be needed to secure a prosecution in the case of wrong doing. 

Students will develop skills in each of the stream areas in identifying tools and techniques and learning how to implement solutions based on a problem-solving methodology.

Information Security stream is a mixture of several disciplines covering sociology, economics, computer technical and abstract areas, business and operational administration and management and all applied to security of information.

This is a fast changing area so close contact is kept with industrial leaders and players in the Information Security industry and invited guest speakers will be a strong feature for this course.

According to the results of “The ISSA/UCD Irish Cybercrime Survey 2006: The Impact of Cybercrime on Irish Organisations” report, Irish organisations are significantly affected by cybercrime where virtually all (98pc) of respondents indicated that they had experienced some form of cybercrime with losses of productivity and data being the main consequences.

The annual Ernst & Young Global Information Security Survey 2008 has revealed that global respondents ranked privacy and data protection among the top three drivers of information security.  Also reported is that despite tightening economies, the survey indicates that organizations are increasing investments in information security and more organisations are adopting international security standards.

Digital Rights Ireland has an extensive list of legal battles to defend the rights of Irish citizens to the creeping changes in law in response to computer crime and government response to it.

Enterprise Ireland has also highlighted the potential negative impacts of cybercrime on business.

The importance of education in data protection and computer crime prevention is reinforced by the increase in the media publicity of security breaches as seen throughout 2007 and 2008.

The programme is one of three streams in a Masters in Computing (Business Data Mining and Software Engineering are the other two) qualifying for government subsidy and has a number of free places allocated for jobseekers. Full course information is available on

John Kennedy is a journalist who served as editor of Silicon Republic for 17 years