University’s Forensic Computing degree takes lead with phone software agreement


A collaborative agreement with Sweden’s Micro SystemationAB company, is enabling Birmingham City University’s Faculty of Technology, Engineering and the Environment (TEE) to integrate mobile-phone investigative certification into its Forensic Computing degree.

Through TEE being the first University faculty to add this valuable qualification to its Forensic Computing BSc course,graduates can expect significant demand for their skills from a growing range of organisations investigating mobile phones used in criminal activities.

Demand for forensic software that keeps pace with rapidly developing mobile phone technology used in fraud and other crimes, is escalating. As an established data communications business, Micro Systemation identified a growing need for mobile phone-based forensic solutions at the beginning of the new millennium.As a result it developed the .XRY software tool to help crime investigators analyse data from mobile communications devices. As a leader in the field, Micro Systemation has dynamically developed .XRY to keep it in the forefront of analytical forensic tools.

Mike Dickinson manages Micro Systemation’s marketing throughout the UK and Ireland. He says: “Despite the sophistication of US and Japanese markets, it is the UK that is most active in using forensic software in analysing and solving cyber-based fraudulent and criminal activity.”

Rapidly developing mobile telephony has transformed basic handsets into digital data devices which provide an evidence trail, not only through phone calls, but also through e-mails and associated internet uses. Despite some initial scepticism, there is now wide recognition among police forces of the value of mobile phone investigative software. This has created high demand for specialist skills in using software tools, among which .XRY is a recognised leader. Micro Systemation provide its .XRY users and analysts with software attuned to their wide-ranging needs. Mobile devices analysed vary from £10 throwaway phones used in ‘one-off crimes’, to complex data devices used in corporate fraud.

Mobile phone, forensic-analysis skills are now widely sought-after by all who deal with cyber-crime, including insurance companies, military services, accountants, solicitors and private investigative organisations. Because there are so many different types of mobile devices it makes things more complicated to retrieve information, so the Association of Chief Police Officers recognises the value of specialists skilled in following evidence trails accurately. Thus Micro Systemation is enabling universities to incorporate .XRY certification into relevant courses to enhance graduate qualifications.

As the first to respond, Birmingham City University’s Acting Head of Computing, Telecommunications and Networks (CTN), Mak Sharma , says: “We are pro-active in forging partnerships with leading organisations that place our degree courses in the forefront of their technological fields.”

The University’s Forensic Computing course is already recommended by leading UK digital forensics and data recovery business, DiskLabs Forensics.* CTN’s Course Director, Shahid Shabbir, comments: “Micro Systemation is an international leader whose mobile phone, analytical software is more dynamically updated than any other. Our partnership with them will further enhance TEE’s Forensic Computing graduate-skills. We also aim to develop .XRY certification in other course contexts.”

Anyone interested in discovering the range of advanced technology education opportunities offered by Birmingham City University should call TEE on 0121 331 5400 or e-mail

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