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Certificate in
Computer Security and Digital Forensics

Note: This certificate program may be completed entirely at a distance. Visit the distance education website for further information.

Sample Distance Course ModuleSample Module

This certificate program is designed to develop the core knowledge and functional competencies required to work in the cutting-edge and rapidly evolving fields of computer security and digital forensics. The program will provide students with both the academic background and hands-on experience to effectively oversee white/black box penetration tests, analyze a system to identify vulnerabilities, manage the remediation of security weaknesses, collect digital evidence in a proper forensic manner, and recover lost data after a hardware failure. The legal environment in which computer security and digital forensics practitioners work will also be examined, and students will gain insight into the role and function of expert forensic witnesses. The program encompasses the technicalities of information security and digital forensics, investigative protocols, professional and ethical considerations for practitioners, and relevant court procedures. Graduates should be well positioned to enter into and succeed in this exciting, competitive, and high-demand field.

Computer security and digital forensics specialists play a vital role in the protection of public and private data and the computer systems controlling everything from financial information to critical infrastructure. This certificate will be of interest to individuals just starting their career; career changers seeking to achieve advancement, portability, and longevity goals; managers and end users requiring a more in-depth understanding of computer security and data protection; and long-time practitioners seeking to round out their knowledge and attain a recognized level of academic achievement.

Important Note: Knowledge of TCP/IP is recommended.

Students must have a Windows or Linux computer operating system; the Apple (MAC) operating system is not supported by this course.

For detailed certificate and program information, please visit www.ryerson.ca/ce/compsec.

Program Director: Anne-Marie Brinsmead, a2brinsm@ryerson.ca

See more courses and programs relating to Computer and Information Technology or Science and Engineering.

Admission Criteria

It is recommended that applicants have the following:

OSSD with six Grade 12 U or M credits, including a Grade 12 U course in English and with a minimum grade point average of 70 percent, or equivalent, or mature student status. Note: Knowledge of TCP/IP is recommended.

Undergraduate students wishing to pursue a continuing education certificate program should be aware of possible restrictions; please refer to Curriculum Advising for complete details.

Program Open House

Students who have questions about the admission criteria and/or would like to know more about this certificate are invited to attend a Program Open House. Please see Open House for dates, times, and location.

Certificate Requirements

The successful completion of six courses, with a cumulative grade point average of 1.67 or higher, is required for the certificate.

Certificate Registration

Students may be registered in only one certificate program at any one time. To allow maximum flexibility in crediting external courses and/or courses previously taken at Ryerson, students should register in the certificate at the beginning of their first course (see also Courses and Programs FAQ). For complete details on the advantages of early registration, registration deadlines, and Transfer Credit restrictions, all students should read Registration in a Certificate Program.

Requirements for Graduation

To graduate, you must successfully complete the published certificate curricula from the year you registered in the certificate. Certificate requirements must be completed within six years from the time you were first admitted into the certificate program. In some circumstances, certificate requirements may change, resulting in courses no longer being available. In such cases, Course Substitutions/Directives may be requested. Also, you must apply on RAMSS to graduate, prior to the appropriate application deadlines (see Important Dates). For complete details, all students should read Graduation.

Recommended Sequence

Students are advised to take the courses in the following sequence:
CKDF 110
CKDF 120
CKDF 130
CKDF 140
CKDF 145, CKDM 150, or CZLW 120
CKDF 150

Note: Students wishing to take another certificate course concurrently with CZLW 120, or to take two or more certificate courses simultaneously may do so.

Required Courses

Students may only select one of CKDF 145, CKDM 150, or CZLW 120.

CKDF 110   Computer Security and Digital Forensics:  Computer Network Security
CKDF 120   Computer Security and Digital Forensics:  Computer Cryptography and Digital Steganography
CKDF 130   Computer Security and Digital Forensics:  Digital Forensics Systems
CKDF 140   Computer Security and Digital Forensics:  Security Architecture and Design
CKDF 145   Computer Security and Digital Forensics:  Certified Information Systems Security Professional (CISSP)
CKDF 150   Computer Security and Digital Forensics:  Digital Forensics Investigation
CKDM 150   Disaster Emergency Management:  Risk Management
CZLW 120   Law:  Law for Forensics Professionals


Note to registered certificate program students
Required Courses
CXCC 110 deleted.
CKDF 145 and CKDM 150 added.

Distance Education

The following courses are available in a distance education format this academic year.

CKDF 110   Computer Security and Digital Forensics:  Computer Network Security
CKDF 120   Computer Security and Digital Forensics:  Computer Cryptography and Digital Steganography
CKDF 130   Computer Security and Digital Forensics:  Digital Forensics Systems
CKDF 140   Computer Security and Digital Forensics:  Security Architecture and Design
CKDF 150   Computer Security and Digital Forensics:  Digital Forensics Investigation
CKDM 150   Disaster Emergency Management:  Risk Management
CZLW 120   Law:  Law for Forensics Professionals


Fast Track in Computer Security and Digital Forensics

This spring, Computer Security Fast Track (CKDF 999) participants can complete all six courses in the Certificate in Computer Security and Digital Forensics in three months, and access specialized material and individualized instructor support.