Archive for January, 2016

Starting A Business in Digital Forensics – Part 2

Thursday, January 21st, 2016

Here’s the continuation of the article about setting up a digital forensics lab. For the first part of the article go here

Outline of Proposal

  • Computer ForensicsThis proposal concerns the establishment of a Digital Forensics Service, to be known as “The Digital Forensics Laboratory”. The service will operate on a Monday – Friday, 9 – 5 basis, with a call out facility for after-hours requirements, and will satisfy a need in the law enforcements and government departments market area for a service that improves the timelines and quality of evidence for use in prosecutions. In addition it will also provide the same level of quality information for use by corporate customers in industrial tribunal that involve the misuse of digital assets.
  • The business proposed in this “case” represents a minimal viable business, with minimum financial risk, and an expected turnover of £200,000 in the financial year rising to over £2 million, 5 years later.

The next section of the business plan describes in more details the business being proposed and explains what it will deliver

The Business

The Nature of the Digital Forensics Service Offering

  • The purpose of the Digital Forensics Service is to provide clients with a reliable and knowledgeable service that will service the demand being place on law enforcement agencies and government departments as a result of ongoing operations and new legislation.
  • The law enforcement and government department market for digital device based investigations is one of the fastest growing markets in the US, the UK, and Europe. The has been brought about by an infusion or funds for the government and the creation of a number of high tech crime investigation units around the country. The creation of these units was a reaction to the increased reporting of digital device based crimes and the lack of skilled staff to address the issues raised.

The Scope of the Digital Forensics Business

  • The business will be a £200,000 establishment, growing to a greater than £2 million turnover business from a laboratory located at the corporate headquarters.
  • There will be a number of offerings to clients, all based on digital forensics. The laboratory will provide a digital device imaging and analysis service for evidence to be used in the courts and in industrial tribunals. The laboratory will provide individuals to act as expert witnesses for the courts and, where required, will provide training to organisations in digital forensic techniques.
  • The service offering, known as “Digital Forensics”, will be launched in January
  • The laboratory will initially utilise industry standard tools for digital forensics imaging and analysis, but as the requirement for the imaging, recovery, and analysis of particular elements and types of information becomes clearer, tools will be acquired or developed to meet the requirement.

Business Strategy got the Parent Organisation vis-a-vis Digital Forensics

  • The principle factors that have influenced the strategy for this business case are investment, staffing resources, and existing expertise and culture with the Organisation.
  • Factors that have not influences that strategy include the organisations desire to be a recognised centre of excellence in the computer security and computer crime investigation areas in the future, or the size of the market for such services. The latter is not seen to be a limiting factor to the growth of the business.
  • The strategy for the activity is to establish the parent organisation as a permiere centre for digital forensics services and digital forensics research in the US. This business case, being modest and risk averse, does not seek to establish the parent organisation as the market leader.
  • The non financial benefits of this activity are that it will allow the staff involved to become highly proficient in the area which in turn will benefit the organisation as a whole and will enhance the reputation of the parent organisation.
  • By undertaking forensic investigations the staff will gain knowledge and skill in areas that will support the wider organisational infrastructure.

Starting A Business in Digital Forensics – Part 1

Thursday, January 7th, 2016

Digital Forensics LabDeveloping a business plan is always a subjective affair, especially in digital forensics which is such a new field and full of unknown quantities. Uk computer forensics experts are one of the best known computer and data investigators in the country and considerable advice and examples of using best practice were adopted by them in the construction of their original business plan. Of course, your own organisation will likely also have its best practices and accepted ways of during things. The material provided here is not intended to be a rigid template, but is offered as an example of a type of business case used successfully by an organisation to create a digital forensics laboratory.

As with any good document you want senior management to absorb, there should be an executive summary at the from telling them – in the length of only a page or so – what the document is about and giving them the “elevator pitch” level of information you want them to approve. To provide context, the following business plan has been written as though the digital forensics laboratory would work within the security department.

Executive Summary

  • This document is the Business Plan for a proposed new activity to be managed by the Security department at the parent Organisation.
  • The activity is concerned with the provision of a Digital Forensics Service, aimed at law enforcement, government departments, major corporations, and small to medium enterprises in the high tech market. The market is ready to explode, and we are ready to exploit it.
  • The market need for these digital forensics services arises for the growth in the detection and pursuit of digital based crimes and the resultant need to forensically image digital devices for law enforcement agencies, government departments, and corporations, and to provide individuals who can act as “expert witnesses” in the courtroom.
  • The Digital Forensics Service will provide a low cost easy to understand service, and be a highly effective solution for the coronet business climate.
  • The purpose of this business case is to present management with the information needed to determine whether or not to proceed with the business. Approval to proceed is sought.
  • Although not without risk, the digital forensics business has both a low technical risk and low financial risk, and is capable of being managed by the Security department.
  • The digital forensics business requires a relatively small investment and has a payback period of less than three years.
  • Income in year 1 will be £150,000, rising to £1,000,000 in three years, and £2,500,000 in five years.

The next section of the business plan is the outline of the proposal that gives a short explanation of the purpose of the plan and an indication of scope.