Online Cybercrime Investigation & Cybersecurity Graduate Certificate
There are few, if any, sectors in the world not driven by networked technology. We live our lives online, from reading the headlines to dating to ordering groceries. We have smart locks at home, sensors in our vehicles, and devices that connect us to every service we could ever need—creating vast amounts of private and sensitive data stored in commercial, financial, medical, military, and government databases. This technology enhances the quality of life, in many cases, and can even be life-saving. Yet, at the same time, the wealth of lucrative and destructive opportunities for cybercriminals, hackers, spies, predators, and other “bad actors” has ballooned.
According to the 2018 Internet Crime Report released by the FBI’s Internet Crime Complaint Center, there were 351,936 complaints reported that year, with losses exceeding $2.7 billion—a 238 percent increase in losses since 2014. The need for law enforcement officers, investigators, and information security professionals with expertise in cybercrime investigation and cybersecurity techniques continues to grow.
The Graduate Certificate in Cybercrime Investigation & Cybersecurity (CIC) at Boston University’s Metropolitan College offers an interdisciplinary approach that combines criminal justice and cybersecurity. Taught by faculty from the departments of Applied Social Sciences and Computer Science, the curriculum ensures that students develop competency and practical knowledge, enabling them to work with various issues related to cybercrime. Students will gain insight into cybercriminology and the practical digital investigative knowledge, legal practices, and policies related to cybersecurity risk assessment. In addition, students who successfully complete the certificate program are eligible to take the forensic examiner exams.
Students who complete the Graduate Certificate in Cybercrime Investigation & Cybersecurity will be able to:
- Understand various criminological perspectives, including cybercriminals’ mindset 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.
Why Choose BU’s Graduate Certificate in Cybercrime Investigation & Cybersecurity?
- Four-course certificate program comprises courses shared by the Master of Science in Criminal Justice program, ranked #4 among the Best Online Master's in Criminal Justice Programs (U.S. News & World Report). The program has been in the top 4 since 2015.
- Students learn from leading criminal justice faculty with extensive field experience and scholarship in cybercrime investigation, cybersecurity, policing, the judicial system, and corrections.
- In the online classroom, students are able to network with a global community of criminal justice professionals.
Information Security Analysts
28% increase in jobs through 2026
$95,510 median annual pay in 2017
7% increase in jobs through 2026 $62,960 median annual pay in 2017
Police and Detectives
7% increase in jobs through 2026
$62,960 median annual pay in 2017
10% increase in jobs through 2026
$80,180 median annual pay in 2018
Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2017-18 Edition
Boston University Metropolitan College (MET) offers competitive tuition rates that meet the needs of part-time students seeking an affordable education. These rates are substantially lower than those of the traditional, full-time residential programs yet provide access to the same high-quality BU education. To learn more about current tuition rates, visit the MET website.
Comprehensive financial assistance services are available at MET, including scholarships, graduate loans, and payment plans. There is no cost to apply for financial assistance, and you may qualify for a student loan regardless of your income. Learn more.
Boston University’s Graduate Certificate in Cybercrime Investigation & Cybersecurity (CIC) consists of four required online courses (16 credits).
Coursework from the Graduate Certificate in Cybercrime Investigation & Cybersecurity can be applied toward the Boston University Metropolitan College Master of Science in Criminal Justice.
Application Fee Waiver
Current members of the American Jail Association (AJA) are eligible for a Graduate Application fee waiver ($25 for applications to the graduate certificate), and should email firstname.lastname@example.org with information confirming AJA membership.
(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. [4 credits]
METCJ710 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. [4 credits]
Plus two of the following:
METCJ620 Cyberterrorism and Cyber Defense
Cyber-terrorists continuously leverage sophisticated techniques in efforts to attack the nation's critical infrastructures by damaging their functionalities and stealing highly sensitive intellectual property, private information, and valuable assets. This course is designed to explore a new explanatory angle for studying cyberterrorism issues from a cyber- intelligence perspective. Major cyberterrorism cases will be empirically analyzed and applied into a lab environment for gaining hands-on-experience and to develop defensive strategies and counter measures. This course aims to examine three main types of cyberterrorism 1) Information Attacks, 2) Infrastructure Attacks, and 3) Technology Facilitation for building both technical capability and a set of policy recommendations to counter these potential threats. [4 credits]
METCJ632 White-Collar Crime
This course introduces students to the concept of white collar crime as an area of scientific inquiry and theory formation. It critically examines the latest scholarship on the subject by looking at white collar crime through a multiplicity of perspectives and reference points. These range from focus on the offense, offender, legal structure, organizational structure, individual, and organizational behavior, to victimization and guardianship, with special attention on the interaction between these components. The course also assesses the nature, extent, and consequences of white collar crime nationally and internationally. To enhance the understanding of white collar crime in today's Information Technology development, the course will pay special attention to roles of IT including fintech and cryptocurrency connections within white collar crime. It will also introduce rapidly emerging cybercrime issues while discussing various challenges of cybercrime investigation and limited digital forensics tools. Finally, the course examines current criminal justice system efforts at controlling white collar crime. Given the relative ineffectiveness of traditional criminal justice responses, alternative systems of control will be examined, ranging from compliance and regulations, private security, and public opinion, to prevention. Students will visit the websites of various government agencies or professional organizations to explore their functions and their current efforts to fight white collar crimes. Finally, many tangible research- based suggestions will be made regarding actions that organizations and businesses can take to reduce losses accrued due to white collar crime. [4 credits]
METCS684 Enterprise Cybersecurity Management
METCS693 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. [4 credits]
METCS694 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. [4 credits]
MET prioritizes the review and admission of applications submitted earlier in the rolling admission process. You are encouraged to submit your application as soon as possible and no later than the priority application deadlines for each term.
Applicants must have an earned bachelor’s degree, in any field of study, from a regionally accredited college/university (or the international equivalent) prior to enrollment at Metropolitan College. The following materials are required for a complete application:
Shea W. Cronin
Assistant Professor, Criminal Justice
Chair, Applied Social Sciences
PhD, American University; BS, Northeastern University
Professor of the Practice
Director, Cybercrime and Cybersecurity
PhD, Indiana University of Pennsylvania; MS, Boston University; BS, Northeastern University
Assistant Professor, Criminal Justice
PhD, Northeastern University; MA, University of Denver; BA, University of Vermont
To learn more or to contact an enrollment advisor before you get started, request information using the button below and tell us a little about yourself. Someone will be in touch to answer any questions you may have about the program and detail the next steps in earning your degree. You can also start your application or register for a course at Metropolitan College.