Digital forensics and incident response are two of the most critical fields in all of information security. The staggering number of reported breaches in the last year has shown that the ability to rapidly respond to attacks is a vital capability for all organizations. Unfortunately, the standard IT staff member is simply unable to effectively respond to security incidents. Successful handling of these situations requires specific training in a number of very technical areas including filesystem implementation, operating system design, and knowledge of possible network and host attack vectors. During this training, students will learn both the theory around digital forensics and incident response as well as gain valuable hands-on experience with the same types of evidence and situations they will see in real-world investigations. The class is structured so that a specific analysis technique is discussed and then the students immediately analyze staged evidence using their newly gained knowledge. Not only does this approach reinforce the material learned, but it also gives the investigator a number of new skills as the course proceeds. Upon completion of the training, students will be able to effectively preserve and analyze a large number of digital evidence sources, including both on-disk and in-memory data. These skills will be immediately usable in a number of investigative scenarios, and will greatly enhance even experienced investigators' skillset. Students will also leave with media that contains all the tools and resources used throughout the training.
Our course is focused on digital forensics and incident response for Windows systems, and provides value to students in three ways. First, the skills learned in this class are capable of taking someone who has never done forensics to be able to immediately perform real investigations. The course also simultaneously teaches advanced investigators techniques and processes that are only performed by the top practitioners in the field. Second, the course is taught by two well-known members of the forensics and incident response fields who have years of real world experience performing corporate investigations, responding to large scale breaches, and developing tools and techniques that are now used throughout the community. As the course progresses, the instructors weave in stories and examples of how the forensics artifacts discussed throughout the course were leveraged during real cases. The instructors also give on-one-on instruction as needed during the exercises to ensure each student is progressing and understanding the material. Third, the hands-on exercises are all modeled after real challenges and tasks that have been encountered in the field, and will eventually be faced by the students of the class.
Incident response handlers, digital forensics investigators, systems administrators, IT managers, and anyone else involved with the technical details of responding to IT security incidents
The course assumes previous forensics knowledge equivalent to that of a junior investigator. Systems administrators and other IT staff often have these skills even if they were never applied to forensics. The hands-on exercises are designed to provide a learning experience to investigators of all skill levels (there will be different objectives based on previous skill-set). Scripting experience (python, perl, ruby, etc) will be helpful to automate the analysis and reporting of results from the exercises, but is not necessary.
Laptop with the following minimum specifications:
Laptops must have access to a Windows installation either as a virtual machine or on the laptop directly. VMware workstation or VMware player must be installed. VMplayer can be downloaded and used for free for purposes of this course. A PDF reader is also required. If students wish to examine evidence from their own Windows installation, they must have a decompression tool that can handle a wide variety of formats (tar, gzip, bzip, RAR, etc) installed. 7zip and Winrar meet this criteria and are free.
A DVD with
A printout of the slides in a binder.
Andrew Case is a senior digital forensics, incident response, and reverse engineering trainer at The Hacker Academy. He is also a GIAC-certified digital forensics investigator and has conducted numerous large scale investigations. Andrew's previous experience includes penetration tests, source code audits, and binary analysis for large corporations and products. Andrew is the co-developer of Registry Decoder, a National Institute of Justice funded forensics application, as well as a developer on the Volatility memory analysis project. He has delivered trainings in the fields of digital forensics and incident response to a number of private and public organizations as well as at industry conferences. Andrew's primary research focus is physical memory analysis, and he has published a number of peer-reviewed papers in the field. He has presented his research at conferences including Black Hat, RSA, SOURCE, BSides, OMFW, GFirst, and DFRWS.
Jamie Levy is a senior digital forensics, incident response, and reverse engineering trainer at The Hacker Academy. Her prior experience includes working on various R&D projects and forensic cases at Guidance Software, Inc. Jamie has taught classes in Computer Forensics and Computer Science at Queens College (CUNY) and John Jay College (CUNY). She has an MS in Forensic Computing from John Jay College and is an avid contributor to the open source Computer Forensics community. She is an active developer on the Volatility Framework. Jamie has authored peer-reviewed conference publications and presented at conferences (OMFW, CEIC, IEEE ICC) on the topics of memory, network, and malware forensics analysis. Additional technical articles and blog posts by Jamie can be found at http://gleeda.blogspot.com.