The Evolution Of Forensic Data Analytics

With the significant development in internet-based communication and data systems, there has been a corresponding rise in cybercrime. The online environment is now such that cybercrime is an ever-present risk when generating, sharing and analysing data.

To mitigate the threats of cybercrime, a new science called digital forensics has emerged. A specialised branch of digital forensics is forensic data analytics.

Forensic Data Analytics Explained

Forensic data analysis involves examining structured data and detecting fraudulent activity using statistical modelling. Sources of the data analysed are computer application systems and corresponding databases.

Forensic data analytics: How It Works

A team needs to adopt three types of expertise for analysing large structured data to detect financial crime:

  • Data Analyst

This individual lists out the queries and conducts technical analysis. It is highly likely that the data analyst will not be aware of the complete case. The analyst would work on bits and pieces of information and forward them to the next function in the team to process.

  • Internal Controls Specialist

This team member examines the data and, based on their experience and knowledge, processes the internal controls. This individual has in-depth knowledge of data protection laws and how they can be implemented within an organisation.

  • Forensic Scientist

Working closely with the internal controls specialist, the forensic scientist makes recommendations based on fraudulent behaviour patterns.

Based on the findings of these three team members, the hypothesis is refined or discarded.

Emerging compliance risks in data analytics

Data protection and privacy compliance are dealt with on priority, especially in EU countries under the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). However, organisations still do not respond adequately to requests by data subjects and data protection authorities.

There is a high rate of digitalisation, particularly in the field of remote working in the current environment, with a corresponding increase in the need to mitigate forensic compliance risks to organisations.

Regulatory compliance has to cover compliance investigations and specific requests. It also needs to be a de facto way of collecting and analysing vast amounts of data, both structured and unstructured.

Handling and controlling data also entails additional risks such as fraud and insider threats.

The need for a compliance plan

Every organisation needs to have a compliance plan in place. According to a survey of global forensic analytics in 2018, 60% of the respondents in Europe had a GDPR plan in place. 78% of the respondents also expressed concern regarding data privacy compliance and data protection.

There is a lot of work markets need to do from the perspective of GDPR and compliance readiness. A wide gap exists between how things should be and how they are.

Collaborating with experts in forensic data analytics such as Acuity Knowledge Partners can help companies implement a compliance plan. This way, data can be handled in a controlled environment, significantly mitigating forensic compliance risks.

The future of forensic data analytics

With the advancement of science and technology, forensic data analytics has become more complex and universal in assisting the global financial sector. As remote data access becomes widespread, however, there is a corresponding increase in cybercrime.

The need of the hour is to develop more tools and techniques to track down cybercriminals and put systems in place to pre-empt their every move. It is also important to have a robust system where forensic data analytics can pull up enough and accurate evidence to make it admissible in a court of law.

The future of forensic data analytics knows no bounds. As technology continues to expand, this field would also expand accordingly. It is important, therefore, to develop analytical tools not only for monitoring and detecting cybercrime, but also for collecting sufficient evidence that can be effectively produced in court.

Forensic data analytics will have a big role to play in the years to come, in terms of putting systems in place to mitigate compliance risks and detect cybercrime. Data will be safer if organisations make more use of forensic data analytics to protect their data and to be in sync with the dynamic nature of data compliance.

Partnering with the right advisory firm

A number of advisory firms provide high-value research and data handling, and are able to process analytical data and business intelligence in financial services. Their clients are financial institutions and consultants, and they provide analyst bandwidth across the globe to ensure a seamless operation. They aim to help clients generate more revenue, using the appropriate technology and automation to make their operating models more efficient.


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  1. author
    27 Aug 2019
    Tomas Mandy

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    1. author
      27 Aug 2019
      Britney Millner

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  2. author
    27 Aug 2019
    Simon Downey

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