Peter Sommer has been providing computer-related expert witness and digital forensic services since 1985, though the practice only began to pick up in 1995. His criminal instructions have included not only the obvious “hacking” and “cyber fraud” cases but also terrorism, harassment, corruption, child sexual exploitation, financial services abuses, software and IP piracy and murder. A number of these have made headlines and a few have altered the way in which these crimes were subsequently investigated and charged. A number also have been very complex and presented challenges in case management. Civil instructions have included theft of trade secrets/breach of confidence, Internet-based defamation, theft of software code, IP/copyright breach, employment disputes and computer contract disputes. Again, a number of these have set precedents. As an academic Peter Sommer teaches information system security, digital investigations and digital forensics, but his first degree is in law and this enables him to provide uniquely focused services to lawyers and investigators. This web-site provides a guide to the services available and contains assistance for lawyers and others contemplating an instruction. Peter Sommer is Professor of Digital Forensics at Birmingham City University, a Visiting Professor at de Montfort University, has developed courses for the Open University and examined and guest-lectured at many other Universities. He is a former Visiting Professor at the London School of Economics and Political Science. There is also a separatewebsite for his academic work here.
In the UK nearly every business uses computers for their activities, including the
use of the Internet; 8o% of British homes have at least one PC, in the average
home there are 3 or 4 Internet-enabled devices. There are over 130 mobile phone
contracts per 100 of the population, 66% of users have a smartphone capable of email
, web browsing and social media interaction. Almost anyone who wants a computer
can afford one - a home PC costs the equivalent of 2 days’ work at average earnings;
the computers bought have disk storage of ever larger and cheaper capacities; a
tablet can be bought on 1 day’s earnings; the household with several computers and
which have been in use for several years is now not unusual.
Small wonder, then, that digital footprints of activity are left everywhere we go
and that digital evidence is important in an astonishing array of human activities
- and that it is used in court and dispute resolution”