author photo
By Clare O’Gara
Fri | Jan 24, 2020 | 8:44 AM PST

When it comes to careers in cybersecurity, the field is still wide open, with hundreds of thousands of roles unfilled.

So whether you're new to the space or looking to change roles, there are an unbelievable number of opportunities.

Will a career as a cyber forensics expert be your next move?

What does a cyber forensics expert do?

A job title like that might make you think about your favorite crime series.

And in some ways, the role of a cyber forensics expert isn't far away from some of the stuff you see on these television shows (with the added layer of cybersecurity, of course).

According to the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Agency (CISA), these are the job expectations for a cyber forensics expert:

  • Conduct data breach and security incident investigations
  • Recover and examine data from computers and electronic storage devices
  • Dismantle and rebuild damaged systems to retrieve lost data
  • Identify additional systems/networks compromised by cyber attacks
  • Compile evidence for legal cases
  • Draft technical reports, write declarations and prepare evidence for trial
  • Give expert counsel to attorneys about electronic evidence in a case
  • Advise law enforcement on the credibility of acquired data
  • Train law enforcement officers on computer evidence procedures
  • Keep abreast of emerging technologies, software and methodologies

How much does a cyber forensics expert make?

Like many cybersecurity roles today, cyber forensics experts can live comfortably, even with junior positions.

The median salary for this role is around $70,000.

But senior employees can make more than $150,000 a year.

Do cyber forensics experts need degrees?

The question of education surrounds several cybersecurity roles. Is a college degree really necessary to work in the position?

Not always, however, many companies are looking for Bachelor's degrees in computer science or cybersecurity.

And when it comes to cybersecurity certifications, you might consider insights from our recent SecureWorld Sessions podcast:

Which soft skills help with a cyber forensics expert role?

Most of us know that cybersecurity is about more than computers.

There are humans and personal interactions that go behind that technology we use every day.

Because of this, cyber forensics experts can also use these other, soft skills, according to CISA:

  • Curiosity & Insight
  • Strong Communication Skills
  • Ability to Write Reports & Explain Evidence, Potentially in Front of Lawyers & Judges

Interested in other cybersecurity positions? Check out the role of a cybersecurity incident responder, here.