NSF Grant Boosts Digital Forensics

From: Public Affairs

Dr. Florian P. Buchholz (Associate Professor, Computer Science) and Dr. Hossain M. Heydari (Professor, Computer Science) have received $916,714 from the National Science Foundation for “Scholarship for Service: Digital Forensics and Undergraduate Information Security.” The grant will provide scholarship support for undergraduate students for a bachelor of science degree in computer science and information security certification. It also will provide scholarship support for graduate students for a master’s degree in computer science with a concentration in digital forensics.

"Digital forensics is the discipline of obtaining digital evidence in a forensically sound manner and interpreting it relating to some incident or crime," Buchholz explains. Information contained within digital devices such as computers, cell phones, PDAs or iPads can link the owner or user to an actual crime or cybercrime by the recovery of deleted files and through data interpretation. The digital forensics program at JMU has a strong focus on computer science with a forensic science component that integrates practical examples and lab work. Graduates of the program will be qualified for a wide variety of jobs, which cover the spectrum from government agencies to consulting work. Government agencies are concerned with investigating computer incidents and attacks on the infrastructure of the agencies, while many specialized companies, including financial institutions, hire individuals to do forensic investigations.

To learn more about the scholarship application process, check on the Department of Computer Science website.

To read about more academic accomplishments, check the scholarly news section of Madison Scholar, the online journal of scholarly work at JMU.

Nov. 14, 2011