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Cyber Security and Digital Forensics BSc

Our course gives you the skill set to identify IT breaches, vulnerabilities and threats facing companies in today’s digital world.
Code
PGB925
Start
October 2022
Duration
3 years full-time
4 years full-time with placement
Usually 5 years part-time
Attendance
Full-time
Part-time
Fees
£9,250 (UK) *
£14,700 (INT / EU) *
Course leader
Ian Mitchell

Why study cyber security and digital forensics with us

Our BSc Cyber Security and Digital Forensics will develop your theoretical knowledge while you gain the skills, practical experience and certifications to excel in areas that range from compliance management to cyber forensics and everywhere in between. Tailor your studies to gain the expert knowledge, certifications and specialist cyber security skills that are in high demand across all sectors and industries.

You’ll enhance your understanding of compliance standards within a range of industries and networks, learn to identify breaches, vulnerabilities and threats – and build the digital investigation skills that will minimise their impact on organisations.

Build your practical skills

We’ll give you the opportunity to develop your professional skills with a year-long, paid work experience placement as part of a four-year study option. You’ll also have the chance to gain industry-recognised certifications, including Cisco's CCNA and CCNP.

You’ll put theory into practice with hands-on experiments in our dedicated network, cyber security and digital forensic labs, using the latest applications and tools used in the IT security field.

Our cyber security and digital forensics degree gives you the flexibility to tailor your studies with optional modules that let you focus on your areas of interest while you develop the skills that will give you a competitive edge in the industry.

Get the support you need to succeed

Our personalised approach gives you the support you need to succeed as a student. While you are an undergraduate or foundation year student, you’ll have a Personal Tutor directly related to your course. If you need support with academic writing, numeracy and library skills, we’ll be sure to provide it. Our Student Learning and Graduate Academic Assistants have studied your subject and can support you based on their own experience.

We’ll give you the help you need to write your CV, develop your job entry plan and make the relevant industry contacts that will let you pursue your career goals. You’ll graduate with a range of job opportunities in a variety of sectors, following in the footsteps of graduates who are now making their mark in companies including Accenture, Grant Thornton, Eurofins Forensic Service, Serious Fraud Office and Transport for London.


Find out more

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What will you study on BSc Cyber Security and Digital Forensics?

Core modules such as programming, networks, and IT security are covered in this course extensively. You will develop expert knowledge in the technological, ethical, regulatory and legal issues in this field, including security, encryption, operating systems and information systems. After Year 2, you will have the opportunity to put what you've learned to practical use with a work experience placement at an organisation.

What will you gain?

You will be prepared to deal with the legal implications of investigations and be able to collect, analyse and report on and present your findings on digital artefacts seized. You will be prepared to investigate unauthorised access or data breaches in an organisation.

Modules

  • Year 1 - Compulsory

    • Computer Systems Architecture and Operating Systems (30 credits)

      This module provides you with fundamental knowledge and principles of computer hardware and operating systems in order to understand the structure and operation of modern computers.

      The module aims to provide you with an understanding of the fundamental behaviour and components (hardware and software) of a typical computer system, and how they collaborate to manage resources and provide services in scales from small embedded devices up to the global internet.

      The module will focus on the understanding of concepts, theory and associated terminology of two core components: ‘Computer Architecture’ and ‘Operating Systems and Networks’. Practical hands-on laboratory experiments will be used to illustrate the application of theory and concepts.

      The lab work ranges between using C code, Batch, Bash and Python. This will allow you to develop a range of programming skills that will support your knowledge and skills not only in this module but in future studies as well.

    • Computer Networks (30 credits)

      This module provides you with the basic skills needed to succeed in networking-related degree programs and also helps you develop the skills necessary to fulfil the job responsibilities of network technicians, network administrators, and network engineers. It provides a theoretically-rich, hands-on introduction to networking and the Internet.

      You will learn both the practical and conceptual skills that build the foundation for understanding basic networking. And you will gain an understanding of the “layered” approach to networks by examining the OSI and TCP/IP models in detail. Among the topics covered will be the various network devices, network addressing schemes and the types of media used to carry data across the network.

      You will also gain a better understanding of routing protocols and learn how to configure, verify, and troubleshoot routing operations.

    • Information in Organisations (30 credits)

      In any modern business environment, data is used to store, preserve, search, retrieve and display information to improve important business processes. It is essential that you have the skills and knowledge to develop information systems. This module provides a comprehensive introduction to database technology, a core IT skill required in many IT disciplines and an extremely good transferable skill.

      The module introduces you to database design, implementation and manipulation knowledge and skills. Once mastered, these skills will provide a firm foundation for higher-level academic study or a rewarding career in many IT related areas such as data analytics.

    • Programming for Data Communication and Networks (30 credits)

      This module introduces fundamental computational concepts and programming constructs relevant to understanding and use of a range of widely used programming languages.

      The main aim is to provide you with the opportunity to learn programming effectively. This takes place in the context of learning to solve a range of problems arising in the context of the processing, storing and transmitting data.

      You will understand the role of a basic but important range of data structures and types, and their use. Several data structures of interest within the networking and security fields will be considered, for example those to represent RTP packets (and associated operations on these), and how audio-visual data can be sent using transport protocols such as the UDP protocol.

      The concept of an algorithm is introduced early on together with the techniques for program implementation. You will be encouraged and supported in undertaking - both individually and within a small group setting - a variety of problem solving tasks.

  • Year 2 - Compulsory

    • Cyber Security and Digital Forensics Compliance (30 credits)

      The aim of this module is for you to better understand both the requirements for cybersecurity legislation and standards, and how they affect compliance. During this module, you will become proficient at how to identify and comply with relevant legislation and standards.

      It includes a consideration into the language and terminology of laws and standards, and how `in house’ regulation can be written to facilitate the following of best practise and legal requirements by a wide range of end users.

      During this module, you will become familiar with the complete standardisation process, from creation to replacement or withdrawal, and also consider the role of and requirements for legislation in this area.

      In addition, you will be able to evaluate and use relevant e-Disclosure/e-Discovery procedures.

    • Digital Incident Scene Investigation and Analysis (30 credits)

      This module provides you with a thorough understanding of all phases in a digital investigation, and the principles of evidence management. It teaches you how to maintain chain of custody and ensure that digital evidence is processed in a way that preserves its integrity.

      You will learn how to extract data from a variety of digital devices and perform forensic analysis through use of industry standard tools and software. Through this you will develop the ability to search through sets of data with the use of techniques that allow for the efficient processing of digital evidence. You will also learn about the different types of digital investigation and the various types of data and evidence that can be produced.

      Importance of verification and the need to keep a detailed record of your actions will be demonstrated through the use of contemporaneous notes, so that you are able to justify any actions you take. Anti-forensic techniques are explored, as are the methods that can be employed to detect and identify them.

      You will be given practical experience of all stages in an investigation and evidence management through scenario-based lab exercises. These skills are then deployed in a simulated crime scene where you will acquire digital evidence and produce a report for your own forensic investigation.

      All of the teaching is supported by a theoretical understanding of current industry standards and best practice guidelines.

    • Network and Protocol Analysis (30 credits)

      The module looks at Network and Protocol Analysis and attempts to cover all aspects of Networking and Protocols including Internet Protocols, Network Services and Cloud Environments as well as Network Monitoring and Analysis.

      The main goal of the module is to equip you with the ability to build and analyse any networking environment independent of the underlying physical networking technology.

      Internet Protocols are the backbone of global communications and will be thoroughly examined in this course: including ARP, IP, UDP and TCP.

      This is then followed by the examination of the use of Network services including DNS, DHCP and CIFS as well as Cloud Environments.

      The course then looks at the Y-Comm Framework, which combines communication, mobility, quality-of-service and security. The course finishes by looking at issues of network monitoring, network analysis and network performance.

    • Internet Technologies (30 credits)

      In past years, there has been an increase in attacks on websites that can result in the disclosure of information that is of a personal and confidential nature. With the introduction of GDPR, it is no longer acceptable to collect information overtly and then not protect that information adequately. The purpose of this module is to consider GDPR compliancy for websites and more importantly implement them for the protection of collected data.

  • Placement Year - Optional

    • Supervised Industrial Placement (120 credits)

      The overall aim of the module is to provide a minimum of nine months and a maximum of 15 months experience in a relevant work placement.

      The specific aims of this module are to enable you to:

      • Experience a technical employment role in a real work setting
      • Apply theoretical knowledge to the solution of practical problems
      • Build your skills to assess practical problems effectively and provide well-grounded solutions
      • Develop and enhance your professional qualities, to work in a management structure, to develop team skills and communication skills;
      • Develop the maturity that will enable you to perform well in your final year;
      • Develop the skills of autonomous learning
  • Year 3 - Compulsory

    • Individual Project (30 credits)

      The primary aim of this module is to give you the opportunity to demonstrate how effectively you have consolidated your knowledge and skills from all other modules via an individual project, which must involve a computer / network / communication solution or a cyber security solution or a digital forensic investigation method.

    • Defensive Security (30 credits)

        The aims of this module are to provide a comprehensive study of the different types of network and cyber threats to computer systems and networks, and provide the various measures needed to secure systems in order to counteract and mitigate against these threats.

    • Memory Analysis (30 credits)

        The aims of this module are to:

        • Complete memory extraction and distinguish and identify memory artefacts
        • Undertake memory acquisition using standard techniques and tools
        • Analyse and extract artefacts from the acquisition process and use these to reconstruct events or/and identify any threats
  • Year 3 - Optional

    • Blockchain Engineering and Analytics (30 credits)

      Blockchain Technology is changing how organisations communicate and operate, with this change there is a challenge and opportunity for Blockchain developers and analysts.

      The aims of this module are:

      i) To convey the required knowledge underpinning Blockchain technology in order to enable you to apply it to practical problems

      ii) To provide the necessary skills to develop and implement Blockchain technology

      iii) To enable you t to synthesise knowledge and skills to successfully perform Blockchain analytics

    • Artificial Intelligence (30 credits)

      The aim of the module is to introduce you to a range of AI theories and techniques, including the most commonly used. You will also have the opportunity to implement these newly learnt techniques, and to extend your own development skills.

    • Security and Network Forensics (30 credits)

      This aim of the module is to provide an understanding of both general and advanced areas related to network security, cyber security, and network forensics.

      It looks at issues, such as, threats and security attacks, vulnerabilities, cryptography, security tools, software security, network attacks and defences, countermeasures, web-based security, network forensic analysis, and security in cloud computing.

More information about this course

See the course specification for more information:

Optional modules are usually available at levels 5 and 6, although optional modules are not offered on every course. Where optional modules are available, you will be asked to make your choice during the previous academic year. If we have insufficient numbers of students interested in an optional module,  or there are staffing changes which affect the teaching, it may not be offered. If an optional module will not run, we will advise you after the module selection period when numbers are confirmed, or at the earliest time that the programme team make the decision not to run the module, and help you choose an alternative module.

  1. Overview
  2. Teaching and learning
  3. Assessment and feedback
  1. Standard entry requirements
  2. International (inc. EU)
  3. How to apply
  1. UK
  2. EU / International
  3. Additional costs

How can the BSc Cyber Security and Digital Forensics support your career?

You will be expected to complete case studies that reflect real-world investigations. Standard Operating Procedures, theory and practice will all be completed and compliant to current regulations. Understanding of regulations and how they are applied is important in organisations that rely on data. These teaching experiences will help prepare you for your future career.

This course can provide a range of job opportunities in a variety of sectors. Previous graduates have gone on to work with:

CompanyRole
AccentureTester
Alvarez and MarsalAnalyst
Bedfordshire PoliceDigital Forensic Examiner
Competition and Markets Authority (CMA)Digital Forensics Officer / Senior Digital Forensic Specialist
DMA UKIT Manager
EpicOperations Analyst / Cyber Forensics Investigator
Ernst and YoungForensic ad Integrity Services Assistant Director / e-Discovery Associate
Eurofins Forensic ServiceSenior Computer Investigator
Financial Conduct Authority (FCA)Cyber Forensics Coordinator / e-Discovery Administrator
Grant ThorntonDigital Forensic Consultant
The Insolvency ServiceForensic Computing Examiner
Inventuse-Discovery Consultant
MindshareBusiness Intelligence Analyst
QACyber Security Researcher
The Royal Marsden Cancer CharitySenior Database Manager
SAPTechnical Consultant / Developer
Serious Fraud OfficeDigital Forensic Investigator
Sussex PoliceDigital Forensic Investigator
Transport for LondonCompliance Manager

Dr Ian Mitchell
Associate professor

Dr Mitchel has been teaching for over 20 years in higher education and has over 40 articles published in domains extending to Neural Networks, Evolutionary Algorithms, Digital Forensics and Blockchain Engineering.

Dr Glenford Mapp
Associate professor

Dr Glenford's primary expertise is in the development of new technologies for mobile, distributed, and vehicular systems. Glenford did research on Y-Comm, an architecture for future mobile communications systems. He now leads research into Intelligent Transportation Systems (ITS) and has been involved in the design and deployment of VANET  (G5) Testbeds.

Dr Ralph Moseley
Senior lecturer

Dr Moseley is module leader for Internet Technologies, Cyber and Information Security, Cross Platform Application Development and Postgraduate Research Projects

Sukhvinder Hara
Senior lecturer

Mrs Hara has spent 7 years as a Digital Forensic Analyst in the Serious Fraud Office and brings invaluable experience to the programme. She has published many articles and is currently completing research in Cryptocurrencies.

Other courses

Computer Networks and Security BSc

Start: October 2022, September 2022: EU/INT induction

Duration: 3 years full-time, 4 years with placement, Usually 5 years part-time

Code: I124

Computer Science BSc/MComp

Start: October 2022

Duration: BSc: 3 years full-time, 4 years with placement, MComp: 4 years full-time, 5 years with placement

Code: BSc: G404, MComp: I10M

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