Category Archives: Digital Forensics

Richland College Named a National Center of Digital Forensics Academic Excellence

Richland College recently met the requirements for designation as a National Center of Digital Forensics Academic Excellence (CDFAE), the only institution in Texas and one of only 10 institutions in the nation to earn this distinction.

The CDFAE program develops partnerships between institutions of higher education and the government to establish standards and best practices for digital forensics students, educators, researchers and practitioners, and in doing so creates advancements in digital forensics and increases the number of qualified professionals in the fields of law enforcement, counterintelligence, national defense and legal.

“At Richland College, digital forensics is a science, technology, engineering and mathematics field, meaning we have developed a unique STEM approach with applied research,” said Zoltan Szabo, Richland College computer science faculty. “Our goal is to teach the scientific method to students in this field as it is required by the legal system for evidence production.”

By focusing on the STEM aspect of digital forensics, Richland College’s digital forensics program provides a non-traditional, research-oriented education to its students in this emerging field.

With its CDFAE designation, Richland College is recognized as a school that establishes a common core curriculum, and the designation requires in-course peer reviews of curriculum and practicum within a three-year period. Richland College also provides the opportunity for students to demonstrate their skills and knowledge in digital forensics, thus giving employers the ability to confirm a candidate’s capability to apply his or her knowledge as suitable in the workplace. In addition, this Richland College program has a certifiable path to meet Department of Defense workforce requirements and national cyber education needs with respect to digital forensics, strengthening the bond among academia, government, professional organizations and the industry.

“The field of digital forensics is very rewarding for those who complete the program, as cyber security fields cannot be outsourced, offering great job security to graduates,” Szabo said.

For more information on Richland College’s digital forensics program, visit www.richlandcollege.edu/forensics. For information on CDFAE, visit http://dc3.mil/cyber-training/cdfae.


Richland College recognized by TSSB, receives grant

Richland College’s Digital Forensics program has received recognition and a $20,000 Texas Skill Standards Board (TSSB) grant to further develop program curriculum.

The TSSB recognized Richland College’s Associate of Applied Science degree in Digital Forensics for “being integrated with the industry-defined digital forensics technician skill standards.”

The skill standards-enhanced program benefits employers and graduates. Graduates can be confident they are gaining skills and knowledge valued by employers in the digital forensics industry, and employers gain a more qualified workforce.

Zoltan Szabo, Richland College’s lead faculty member in Digital Forensics, led the effort with employers to develop the skill standards, and then integrated the standards into the curriculum and applied for program recognition.

Mr. Szabo worked with a panel of experts from regional, state, national and international companies to develop the digital forensics technician skill standards. Participating companies included DFW Forensics, ERASE Enterprises, Stroz Friedberg, Accudata Systems Inc., Digital Discovery, CFSI Inc., Deloitte, Transperfect, Cyber Defense Lab, Shaw Digital Forensics Services, G-C Partners and the Federal Public Defender’s Office.

In September, Richland College was awarded a grant of $510,894 from the National Science Foundation to support and develop the college’s Digital Forensics program. Richland College is Texas’ only Center of Academic Excellence for Information Assurance 2-Year Education and Training.

Richland College has been developing its Digital Forensics program in response to a critical nationwide need for as many as 65,000 new specialists in cybersecurity to prevent and investigate threats to the United States’ cyber infrastructure.

To learn more about Richland College’s Digital Forensics program, visit www.richlandcollege.edu/forensics. To learn more about the TSSB, visit www.tssb.org.


Richland College receives NSF grant for Digital Forensics

Richland College has been awarded a grant of $510,894 from the National Science Foundation to support and develop the college’s growing Digital Forensics and Information Assurance program.

Richland College has been developing its Digital Forensics program in response to a critical nationwide need for as many as 65,000 new specialists in cybersecurity to prevent and investigate threats to the United States’ cyber infrastructure.

Richland College, the state’s only Center of Academic Excellence for Information Assurance 2-Year Education and Training, currently offers an associate degree and a technical certificate in Digital Forensics and Information Assurance.

The three-year grant will help Richland College also to deliver current cybersecurity courses online and to raise awareness of cybersecurity careers among elementary and secondary school teachers, guidance counselors, students and parents in local school districts including Richardson and Garland. Some 180 undergraduate students as well as 500 K-12 students and 50 teachers will participate in the project.

The grant also provides for Richland College to shape transfer agreements in digital forensics with four-year universities and to create a learning model to help military veterans earn digital forensics course credits and degrees.

For more information about Richland College’s Digital Forensics and Information Assurance program, visit www.richlandcollege.edu/forensics or call 972-238-6210.