New in Plaintext

By Derek Knights

It takes a hefty title to sum up 400 pages of solid, well-structured instructional text. Cyber Crime Investigations – Bridging the Gaps Between Security Professionals, Law Enforcement, and Prosecutors by Anthony Reyes et al. fits the bill.

The book’s ten chapters cover topics ranging from cybercrime prevention to incident response, while other sections tackle legal issues such as the interception of WiFi (wireless) transmissions. Several are, of course, devoted to investigations and feature good discussions on how business can help law enforcement and vice versa. While the authors mostly understand the differences between the two, occasionally authors forget that businesses are not an adjunct of the justice system and that the police are not interested with doing only what’s good for the stockholder.

There are two appendices, one a case study that is heavily influenced by its two authors’ employer. It’s interesting, but it has a different tone than the rest of the book and could easily have been left out.

The other appendix, titled “Legal Principles for Information Security Evaluations,” which is written by Bryan Cunningham, is jam-packed with good information. It’s the book’s standout piece.

There are some minor distractions. The style of the publication is such that there are a lot of bolded headlines, sidebar boxes, designs, and shading, which are mildly annoying. Each chapter ends with a number of “FAQs,” only some of which are actually useful. In addition, purchase of the book endows membership in, where readers can send their own questions to the authors.

Lead author Anthony Reyes is a former New York City Police Department detective with a background in cybercrime. Several of his coauthors have similar backgrounds that consist of both law enforcement and legal experiences. However, contributors have definite “techie” and general business expertise as well.

Each of the contributors brings a different style to this collaborative effort, and the noticeable juxtapositions in style enhance the book’s readability.

This work purports to cover a wide range of cybercrime issues, and it generally achieves that objective. It might not answer all of your cybercrime questions, but you’ll be better off with this book than without it.

The book, published by Syngress Publishing, is available from for $59.95.

Review by Derek Knights, CPP, CISSP (Certified Information Systems Security Professional), CFE (Certified Fraud Examiner), CIPP/C (Certified Information Privacy Professional/Canada). He is a senior IT security governance specialist for Sun Life Financial in Toronto. Knights is a member of ASIS International.



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