The Institute of Cyber Digital Investigation Professionals (ICDIP) has gone into operation as a self-funding body with the aim of strengthening professionalism in the field.
It has been formally launched by the College of Policing (CoP) and the Chartered Institute of Information Security (CIISec), following a five-year project in which the ICDIP was supported by Home office funding through the National Cyber Security Programme.
CIISec will manage the organisation under contract to the CoP.
It will measure the competency of practitioners and provide a framework in which they can prove their expert status, with the aim of building widespread confidence in relevant investigations.
The initial creation of the ICDIP was prompted by concerns that cyber digital investigation was not recognised as a specialist profession, which sometimes prompted challenges to the veracity of the evidence in court cases.
The institute will offer accreditation of individuals against its skills and standards framework across five job families: investigator, intelligence, interviewer, forensics and analyst. Each of these will have skill categories of practitioner and strategist as well as membership levels of affiliate, associate and full member. This is intended to support their standing as expert witnesses.
It said it currently has about 700 accredited members from over 70 law enforcement organisations.
Need for accreditation
Sarra Fotheringham, policing standards manager for digital and cyber at the CoP, said: “The growing importance of cyber digital investigation skills in policing meant there needed to be both a standards framework and accreditation to measure them. Using the framework to validate competency assures that we have highly competent and capable individuals conducting specialist cyber and digital investigations.”
Amanda Finch, CEA of CIISec, commented: “Measuring skills and competency through accreditation is vital in all factors of cyber, and investigation is no different. The growth of cyber crime, and the increased connection of cyber and digital activities with other crimes, means that a method to benchmark and prove individuals’ skills and reliability as a witness is crucial.”
Image from iStock, Temniy