Qualify for Cybercrime Investigation Jobs with a Master’s in Criminal Justice
The Master of Science in Criminal Justice concentration in Cybercrime Investigation & Cybersecurity at Boston University’s Metropolitan College (MET) provides practical and essential knowledge of cybercrime investigative techniques and cybersecurity practices.
While traditional crime has been on the decline since the 1990s, cybercrime has been on the rise. According to the FBI’s Internet Crime Complaint Center (IC3), from its inception in 2000 through 2019, there have been 4,883,231 complaints received. In the years since 2015, IC3 reported an average of more than 340,000 complaints annually, with $10.2 billion in financial losses. That is just the tip of the iceberg, however, as some estimate that only 1 in 10 incidents are reported to law enforcement.
Program at a Glance
- Top 4 Online Programs since 2015
- Online and On Campus
- Full-Time or Part-Time Study
- 32 Credits
- 8–16 Months to Completion
- 4 Full-Time Faculty Members
- No GRE/GMAT
Advance Your Criminal Justice Career
With cybercrime occurring globally, and across jurisdictions, the challenges for police are real, as is the need for specialized resources and expertise in cybercrime investigation training. The Cybercrime Investigation & Cybersecurity concentration of BU MET’s MS in Criminal Justice focuses on developing the competency and practical knowledge needed to work with various issues related to cybercrime. In this program, you will gain insight into cybercriminology and the practical digital investigative knowledge, legal practices, and policies related to cybersecurity risk assessment. As a graduate, you will be eligible to take the forensic examiner certification exams.
“The computer and mobile forensic courses in my program certainly added a skill to my toolbox that has allowed me to explore more opportunities in law enforcement and utilize a variety of investigative methods. I was able to expand on those skills and earned my Cellebrite Certified Operator and Cellebrite Certified Physical Analyst certificates.”—Michael-Angelo Zummo (MET’17), Investigative Analyst for the Office of the Special Narcotics Prosecutor in New York, New York
Why BU’s Criminal Justice Master’s Has Been Top 4 since 2015
- Active Learning Environment: Benefit from a criminal justice master’s that employs case studies, simulations using real data, and hands-on problem solving to develop practical skills you can immediately apply on the job.
- Engaged Faculty: Collaborate with faculty who have subject-matter expertise, research-based insight, and extensive field experience in law enforcement, corrections, cybercrime investigation and digital forensics, research and policy, forensic mental health, the judicial system, strategic management, and many other areas.
- Extensive Network: Study alongside classmates whose diversity of criminal justice experience inspires discussion and debate, along with the opportunity to form valuable, long-lasting connections in the field.
- 15:1 Class Ratio: Enjoy an exceptional student-to-instructor ratio, ensuring close interaction with faculty and access to support.
- Valuable Resources: Make use of Boston University’s extensive resources, including the Center for Career Development, Fitness & Recreation Center, IT Help Centers, Mugar Memorial Library, the George Sherman Union, and many others.
- Flexible Options: Study at the pace that works for you, evenings on campus or fully online. Courses begin fall, spring, and summer; online courses have two starts per term.
- Track Record: Learn from the best—BU MET has offered criminal justice education since 1973, introducing the master’s degree in criminal justice in 1980, which became BU’s first fully online program in 2002.
- Merit Scholarships: All applicants are automatically considered, and admitted students are nominated based on eligibility.
- Fee Waiver: Current members of the American Jail Association (AJA) are eligible for a Graduate Application fee waiver ($85 for applications to the master’s program).
Prepare for the Future of Criminal Justice
The Cybercrime Investigation & Cybersecurity concentration is part of BU MET’s Master of Science in Criminal Justice (MSCJ). In this course of study, you will learn from industry experts whose designations include chair of the American Society of Criminology’s Division of Cybercrime.
The master’s in Criminal Justice at BU MET is designed for professionals who want to enter or advance in the field of criminal justice—or simply gain a deeper understanding of this fascinating discipline and how it intersects with careers in mental health, public health, journalism, and law. Emphasizing practical, insightful, and adaptable knowledge, BU MET’s criminal justice courses develop practical skills that can be immediately applied on the job while informing your career growth for years to come.
Graduate Ready to Fight Cybercrime
Metropolitan College’s Criminal Justice master’s degree concentration in Cybercrime Investigation & Cybersecurity will equip you to:
- Understand various criminological perspectives, including cybercriminals’ mindsets and the motivational factors that contribute to the committing of illegal activities.
- Evaluate enforcement and sanctioning issues particular to the nature of cybercrime, and identify specific problems with the use of new technology in international jurisdiction.
- Formulate criminological strategies for the prevention of cybercrime.
- Comprehend issues around the legal admissibility of digital evidence and recognize various cybercrime environment issues in the course of a cybercrime investigation.
- Exhibit comprehensive knowledge of cybercrime-focused digital forensics and develop the ability to apply digital forensic knowledge to cybercrime cases.
- Use state-of-the-art digital forensic tools of the industry with an adequate degree of proficiency and gain essential preparation for the Digital Forensic Examiner certification exams.
- Understand the process of conducting computer crime investigation and indicating security characteristics, threats, and responses via security measure assessment from technology; policy and practice; and education, training, and awareness dimensions.
- Practice risk management—identification, quantification, response, and control—and disaster recovery procedures and countermeasures for the business enterprise.
You can also earn the master’s in Criminal Justice with a concentration in Cybercrime Investigation & Cybersecurity by completing the Graduate Certificate in Criminal Justice and the Graduate Certificate in Cybercrime Investigation & Cybersecurity. To be eligible for the degree, you must apply for admission and be accepted into the degree program. Consult with a graduate admissions advisor to learn more about this option.
Master’s in Criminal Justice Requirements
(Four courses/16 credits)
Criminology and Crime Policy
o This course explores potential answers to complex and important questions about criminal behavior by drawing on the social science of criminology. Criminology is the interdisciplinary study of the development of law, criminal phenomena and societal responses to crime. The course has two primary focuses: 1) to explore and evaluate major explanations or theories of crime and 2) understand and evaluate the policy implications of major crime problems. Because criminology is interdisciplinary, students will examine theories that are grounded in a range of academic perspectives, including sociological, biological, political, psychological and economic explanations for crime. These theories will be centered on important public policy debates about a host of contemporary problems, including: firearm violence, high post- incarceration recidivism, opioid use disorder crisis and human trafficking. Course lectures and discussions focus on the historical development of the theories, their major assumptions and propositions, their relevance for public policy and practice. As the course progresses through each explanation for crime, students will have the opportunity to critically evaluate the validity of different explanations for crime as well as criminal justice policies and practices that they support.
Criminal Justice Administration and Ethics
o This course will introduce students to the concepts of criminal justice administration and ethics. Students will learn about: the management of justice organizations in the United States, and the various debates as to how best to carry out crime control. Topics covered include: organizational theory and structure, professional ethics, leadership and management styles, organizational deviance and socialization, employee motivation, and management responses to stress and burnout. The course is designed to help students understand the characteristics of effective leadership and policy implementation in the field of criminal justice. Students will also have the opportunity to analyze ethical dilemmas commonly confronted in criminal justice work.
Research and Evaluation Methods
o The skills used in research method have become central to many positions within criminal justice administration and related areas. Not only are professionals required to understand and critically evaluate the program and policy science in their field to make decisions, they often employ methodological skills in program and policy development, implementation, management and assessment. This course takes students through the research process from question development to administration and reporting. It emphasizes applied research situations and settings and specifically program evaluation and assessment. After examining various research design models, the course focuses on specific techniques that inform both quantitative and qualitative evaluation studies. These include sampling procedures, survey design, interview techniques, participant observation and case studies and process evaluations.
Applied Analytical Methods
o Evidence-based and data-driven approaches to crime problems are the industry standard among criminal justice agencies and non-governmental organizations. This course will cover a variety of statistical "tools" from three broad areas: (1) descriptive statistics, (2) inferential statistics and hypothesis testing, and (3) measures of association. Students will learn how to develop research questions, describe and draw conclusions from quantitative data, and interpret statistical research findings, and be able to present these findings to a variety of audiences in a clear and accurate way -- to be able to "tell a story" with numbers. In addition, students will develop a proficiency working with large data sets and conducting analysis with a critical lens, using the analytical software -- Statistical Package for the Social Sciences (SPSS) -- commonly used in criminal justice and related fields.
Cybercrime Investigation & Cybersecurity Concentration Requirements
(Four courses/16 credits)
This course is designed to help students understand and apply the nature of computer crime in the criminal justice field. Several theories (both micro-level and macro-level) will be presented and will be analyzed in depth and applied to computer crime cases both past and present. Students will see how major theories have been re-developed to be applied to computer crime, and by using these theories, students will both develop and explore different strategies for future law enforcement. Students will be presented with common types of fraudulent schemes, as well as several laws that have been enacted and developed specifically for computer crime. In addition, causes, victimization, legal issues, control strategies, and societal costs regarding the "computer-crime" problem will be explored and evaluated.
Applied Digital Forensic Investigation
This course is designed to engage students for conducting successful forensic examinations of digital devices and computer networks with hands-on-experience within the Virtual Security Lab. The course introduces EnCase forensic software, which has received the high acceptance rate in a court of law as an expert witness. The course aims to cover various cybercrime topics and digital forensic investigation practices using digital evidence samples. In the process of learning, students will explore the nature of specific cybercrime and be able to successfully analyze and document the digital evidence related to the crime.
Digital Forensics and Investigations
Provides a comprehensive understanding of digital forensics and investigation tools and techniques. Learn what computer forensics and investigation is as a profession and gain an understanding of the overall investigative process. Operating system architectures and disk structures are discussed. Studies how to set up an investigator's office and laboratory, as well as what computer forensic hardware and software tools are available. Other topics covered include importance of digital evidence controls and how to process crime and incident scenes, details of data acquisition, computer forensic analysis, e-mail investigations, image file recovery, investigative report writing, and expert witness requirements. Provides a range of laboratory and hands-on assignments either in solo or in teams. With rapid growth of computer systems and digital data this area has grown in importance. Prereq: Working knowledge of windows computers, including installing and removing software. Access to a PC meeting the minimum system requirements defined in the course syllabus.
Plus one of the following:
IT Security Policies and Procedures
This course enables IT professional leaders to identify emerging security risks and implement highly secure networks to support organizational goals. Discussion of methodologies for identifying, quantifying, mitigating and controlling risks. Students implement a comprehensive IT risk management plans (RMP) that identify alternate sites for processing mission-critical applications, and techniques to recover infrastructure, systems, networks, data and user access. The course also discusses related topics such as: disaster recovery, handling information security; protection of property, personnel and facilities; protection of sensitive and classified information, privacy issues, and criminal terrorist and hostile activities.
Mobile Forensics and Security
Overview of mobile forensics investigation techniques and tools. Topics include mobile forensics procedures and principles, related legal issues, mobile platform internals, bypassing passcode, rooting or jailbreaking process, logical and physical acquisition, data recovery and analysis, and reporting. Provides in-depth coverage of both iOS and Android platforms. Laboratory and hands-on exercises using current tools are provided and required.
Any request for addition or substitution of elective courses requires approval from the department.
Criminal Justice Faculty
Tuition & Financial Assistance
Competitive TuitionOur part-time rates are substantially lower than those of the traditional, full-time residential programs yet provide access to the same high-quality BU education.
Comprehensive Financial AssistanceOur services include scholarships, graduate loans, and payment plans.
Current members of the American Jail Association (AJA) are eligible for a Graduate Application fee waiver ($85 for applications to the master’s program), and should email email@example.com with information confirming AJA membership.
What to Read Next: MET Criminal Justice Knowledge Center