The Cyber Finale

Earlier this month, the RTC hosted the same group of thirty-six law enforcement professionals from Burkina Faso, Ghana, Nigeria, and Togo for their sixth time together. Nicknamed the “Cyber Cohort,” this group attended a three-part course series in 2018 that provided them with comprehensive training in identifying and preserving digital evidence. To further enhance their skills and prepare them for judicial proceedings, the Cyber Cohort was brought back to the RTC in 2019 for training on how to infiltrate the Dark Web, how to extract mobile devices, and how to analyze large sums of data to support investigations. 

This course series was sponsored by the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs (INL) Office of Africa and the Middle East (AME). In addition to INL/AME, the courses wouldn’t have been possible without the FBI Legal Attaché, the expert instructors from the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and collaboration from the U.S. Embassy’s Resident Legal Attaché.

The fourth installation of the course series was particularly exciting and memorable, as the US Ambassador to Ghana, Stephanie Sullivan, addressed the participants and recognized them for their professional achievements. As a demonstration of the United States Government’s commitment to supporting Ghana and the sub-region’s fight against cybercrimes, Ambassador Sullivan presented the Government of Ghana with INL-funded mobile phone forensic extraction equipment, digital forensic tools, and software licenses.

By the time that the Cyber Cohort had made it to the final phase of the series, Advanced Cyber Investigative Techniques, it was evident that the students had built working relationships in addition to friendships with one another – across agencies and borders. The final phase was almost exclusively spent conducting case studies that allowed the class to put their newly acquired skills together. By the close of the course, the group’s skillsets had dramatically improved, resulting in newfound confidence in their ability to collect digital evidence and report on their findings.

The RTC would like to formally congratulate the Cyber Cohort for their participation and hard work. In the words of US Ambassador to Ghana Stephanie Sullivan, “Because we live in a digital age with countless electronic platforms on which our economies and access to information depend, we must remain vigilant against cyber threats.” To our entire alumni network: the RTC applauds your continued efforts to vigilantly protect your countries against cybercrimes.

Read more about the Ambassador’s visit to the RTC here: