The rising cybercrime threat has driven the demand for cybersecurity professionals through the roof

Virtual criminal activity started as early as the 1970s. In 1984, the first computer forensics program, Magnetic Media, was created by the FBI to find child pornography offenders. Since then, cybersecurity has grown to include 31 different specialty areas, as categorized by the National Cyber Workforce Framework.

Dr. Jon Haass, Associate Professor and Chair of Cyber Intelligence and Security at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University’s Prescott, AZ campus, explains that in a criminal scenario, law enforcement uses digital forensics to determine the origin of the offense, the type of activity and the identity of those responsible. One challenge today is that attackers or criminals can use a proxy Internet address, making them virtually untraceable.

Today, there is a whole industry that creates tools for digital forensics. Haass sees great movement toward AI – artificial intelligence, and teaching the computer to recognise anomalies, specifically the programming signatures of the criminals.  Postings for jobs in this field are up 74 percent over the past five years, according to news.erau.  On an all-USA level, average salaries are strong, coming in at $91,000. However, as recently as January 2015 over 200,000 postings for cybersecurity jobs were unfilled.

“There are more cybersecurity jobs than graduates today. Isn Phoenix and Maricopa County alone, over 1,000 cyber professionals are needed,” said Haass, also a member of the Arizona Cyber Security Task Force which is focused on attracting cybersecurity professionals to Arizona. “The good news is that Embry-Riddle is working very hard to produce professionals who can help businesses and the government manage their cybersecurity needs.”

“Our students are working on the solutions while gaining experience through collaborating and consulting,” said Haass. “In one project they gather intelligence and perform analysis on cyber-crimes around the world which are then communicated out to agencies who are focused on cyber counter-terrorism.”

Source:  Cyber Security Intelligence