Computer Forensics: An Essential Guide for Accountants, Lawyers, and Managers


by Michael Sheetz, J.D.
John Wiley & Sons Inc., 2007, 152 pp.

For novices and experts alike, Michael Sheetz traces the evolution of computer forensics from computer crime investigators, who focused on securing a system, into entities dedicated to the preservation and recovery of digital evidence for admissibility and use in court.

Understanding the fundamentals of how computers process information (input, storage, processing and output) is inherent to the computer forensics process, which is broken into five main steps:

Preservation—the crucial stage in ensuring evidence remains unchanged.

Collection—the process of collecting evidence will mean that it does change; extremely thorough and careful documentation and planning are essential.

Analysis—a starting point for the broad area of analyzing information discovered in the preservation and collection phase.

Re-creation—reporting and documentation requirements to ensure the “evidentiary admissibility” of evidence collected.

Reporting—presentation process.

As the author explains, this book is not meant to be a comprehensive guide on computer forensic evidence, but it does provide a strong foundation for CPAs and other professionals who are getting into this growing field.


Year-end tax planning and what’s new for 2016

Practitioners need to consider several tax planning opportunities to review with their clients before the end of the year. This report offers strategies for individuals and businesses, as well as recent federal tax law changes affecting this year’s tax returns.


News quiz: Retirement planning, tax practice, and fraud risk

Recent reports focused on a survey that gauges the worries about retirement among CPA financial planners’ clients, a suit that affects tax practitioners, and a guide that offers advice on fraud risk. See how much you know with this short quiz.


Bolster your data defenses

As you weather the dog days of summer, it’s a good time to make sure your cybersecurity structure can stand up to the heat of external and internal threats. Here are six steps to help shore up your systems.