Seminars & Training

December 14 - December 16, 2004

Computer Search and Seizure Course

Course Description:

This course provides basic information to the street-level investigator and search personnel in the proper procedures for seizing computer systems used in the commission of a crime. It explains the special needs of the field examiner or forensic expert and includes some legal issues such as probable cause and evidence preservation peculiar to seizing computer systems. The course is a prelude to forensic instruction on retrieving or recovering data from the system.

Training Information:

Duration: 3 days (24 hours)
Prerequisites: See Description
Lead Instructor: Mark M. Pollitt

Course Objectives:

Upon completion of this course, the officer will be able to explain how computers, the internet and digital storage media can be utilized in criminal activity. The officer will be able to identify a variety of computers, network equipment and digital storage devices which may be encountered in connection with criminal investigations. The officer will be able to correctly draft a search warrant affidavit to seize digital evidence. The officer will be able to correctly plan and execute a search warrant for digital evidence including: a search plan, initial entry, survey, site documentation, interviews, computer system documentation, searches for computer related computer information, photographing computer systems, securing computer systems and storage media, packaging, storage and transportation of digital evidence. The officer will be able to explain the roles, responsibilities and limitations of computer forensic examiners, analysts and investigators.

Course Materials:

  • NIJ Electronic Crime Scene Investigation Guide
  • IACP Best Practices for Seizing Electronic Evidence
  • NCTP Cyber Crime Fighting
  • FBI CART Conducting Searches in a Computer Environment
  • DOJ Federal Guidelines for Searching and Seizing Computers

Training Agenda:

Date Morning Session Afternoon Session
Dec 14 Course introduction
Introduction to computer forensics
Legal Issues
Introduction to computers and networks
Internet and evidence
Computer and hardware lab
Drafting affidavits
Dec 15 Review of draft affidavits
Introduction to Operating Systems
Interviewing for computer searches
Mock interviews
Computer search planning
Operations orders and checklists
Search execution
Packing, transporting and Storage of digital evidence
Dec 16 Mock Computer Search Warrant
Examiner/Investigator relationships
Moot Court Demo
Assessment test