Marshall to host digital forensics Cyber Day for high-schoolers

Marshall University is seeking local high school students interested in learning more about the world of cybercrime, digital forensics and cyber security. The university’s Digital Forensics and Information Assurance program will host its ninth annual “Cyber Day,” a one-day event, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday, April 2, for local students in grades 9-12.

The event is part of the 11th annual conference of the Appalachian Institute of Digital Evidence (AIDE) and will be held at the university’s Forensic Science Center.

John Sammons, director of Digital Forensics and Information Assurance at Marshall, said the Appalachian Institute of Digital Evidence (AIDE) will host this interactive, hands-on program for students who have an interest in computers, a strong work ethic and a desire to learn.

“High school students who attend our conference will learn about hackers, how cyber criminals operate and how to solve crimes with digital evidence,” Sammons said. “They will also explore crime scene search protocol, evidence collection, cyber warfare and the various careers in digital forensics and cyber security.”

The conference has 25 seats available. T-shirts will be provided to each student. To apply, send an e-mail to Sammons at with the following information: full name, contact e-mail and phone number, high school, current grade level, T-shirt size, brief description of current computer skills (lack of skills will not exclude participants) and reason for wanting to attend the conference. Deadline for applications is Monday, March 27.

“Our students will get a hands-on introduction to the software used by forensics professionals to collect and document digital evidence,” Sammons said. “They will also get a tour of our digital forensics laboratory and have opportunities to interact with our faculty members.”

The Appalachian Institute of Digital Evidence is a regional, not-for-profit organization dedicated to serving the legal, technical, public sector and business professionals for whom digital evidence is part and parcel of their work. It exists to help network administrators, digital forensics practitioners, law enforcement and legal professionals survive – and even thrive – in the ever-changing landscape where technology and the law meet. By fostering collaboration among practitioners, students and academics, AIDE aims to improve access to information, develop solutions to practical problems and narrow the gap between the accessing and use of digital evidence and traditional physical evidence in the law.

For more information on the digital forensics and information assurance program at Marshall, visit online or visit AIDE at


Photo: Marshall digital forensics faculty member John Sammons (left) works alongside graduate student Celia Whelan to conduct vehicle forensics research.