Private Investigation Laws: Obstacles and SolutionsBy Baselinemag | Posted 2008-01-02 Email Print
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The following are some common issues computer forensic specialists may encounter and some ways of overcoming or complying with legal limitations.Depending on the jurisdiction and regulatory laws, computer forensic professionals may be subject to private investigator (PI) licensing requirements. The key word is "may," since each law is different and not always comprehensive.
The following are some common issues computer forensic specialists may encounter and some ways of overcoming or complying with legal limitations.
State requires PI licenses for digital forensics. By virtue of interpretation, this requirement will have two negative effects on enterprise investigation wherein digital evidence is used in criminal or civil proceedings: Consultancies hired to collect and analyze digital evidence will have to be qualified PIs in each state where they conduct investigations; and large services organizations could be considered a PI business when working on behalf of their clients.
PI licensing requirements vary from state to state. Some states require the computer forensic specialist to take a test, while others require a number of years' experience working in law enforcement or private investigation, and hefty application fees.
Training and qualification are costly in time and money. Most accepted digital forensic certifications are only available to law enforcement. Cybertrained ex-agents and -officers, whose work also qualifies licensed PIs, are the only ones poised to reap the benefit of these laws.