“We have worked a number of high profile cases locally and even some outside of the country involving computer and cell phone evidence. The cases have ranged from sexual harassment to murder.”
That said, Rivera naturally has non-disclosure contracts for each case, so all the information he’s gathered—including names, dates, and subjects—are confidential. Still, we’ve all seen this process done on countless TV shows and crime scene procedurals and understand just how important and interesting this area of crime scene investigation can be.
Recently, Rivera and his team hosted a seminar for the California State Bar to the Kern County Public Defender’s Office and 75 legal minds called “A Goldmine of Hidden Evidence: Computer and Cell Phone Forensics.” According to Rivera, the goal of the workshop was to give lawyers a better understanding of digital evidence and how it can be used to maximize case results.
That’s why this part of the business has worked its way into the educational division, as mentioned above. Children and adults can learn the techniques that will put them ahead of the competition in both school and the job market.
Really, the challenges of Rivera’s business come down to technology. Programs, procedures, and electronic advances keep the industry in flux and that means that he and his staff have to stay on top of changes in digital forensics. Not to mention the cost of the forensic equipment and programs that have to be purchased in order to do the work in the first place.
The advances in cell phone development have really grown that area of the business, Rivera explained. More cases involve retrieving cell phone data now than ever before. And those new techniques need to then be taught to those in the educational programs.
“Since its inception, Advanced Micro Resource has led in the development of technical education and IT training programs throughout California. We have equipped children, youth, and adult populations with lifelong skills that have led to long-term student educational success and employment for adults. Our enrichment educational services, now used in many schools, are leading the way for children by igniting a passion in students in STEM fields.”
And you don’t get there without suffering a few setbacks, like Rivera said, with funding or having to re-train employees in constantly changing technology. Still, he said that the company increased its revenue from the previous year and, because the need for STEM education is still high and the number of caseloads he’s expecting from attorneys is going up, he’s projecting similar growth in the coming year.
Growth is all well and good, but for Rivera, who has always been interested in technology, he values his work for other reasons. “I love the personal satisfaction I get from helping others succeed, and helping our community become more educated. And on the forensics side, it’s such an extremely interesting area of work; defending the rights of others, working tirelessly to locate evidence in a case…”
For someone who started out tinkering with TVs and radios, Rivera has come full circle, founding a successful technological/educational company that encourages those who started out the same way to reach for the top…or in this case, the laptop.