Developments in information technology have begun to pose new challenges for policing. Most professions have had to adapt to the digital age, and the police profession must be particularly adaptive, because criminal exploitation of digital technologies necessitates new types of criminal investigation. More and more, information technology is becoming the instrument of criminal activity. Investigating these sophisticated crimes, and assembling the necessary evidence for presentation in a court of law, will become a significant police responsibility. The application of computer technology to the investigation of computer-based crime has given rise to the field of forensic computing. This paper provides an overview of the field of forensic computing.
Given the increasing opportunities for computer-based crime in contemporary Australia, a number of related emerging issues need serious consideration by Australian law enforcement. Many agencies throughout Australia must recognize the contribution that forensic computing can make in the investigation of crime, and in turn must ensure that such a contribution is supported and positively promoted. Failure to do so will see those agencies falling behind technologically competent criminals who readily recognize the advantages of using new technologies in the commission of crime.