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What Are the Different Types of Forensic Technician Jobs?

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  • Written By: Ken Black
  • Edited By: Andrew Jones
  • Last Modified Date: 23 November 2016
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While all forensic technician jobs tend to focus on finding the truth behind an alleged criminal event, the jobs those technicians do can be very specialized, and may vary widely. Although the jobs may be classified in many different ways, forensic technician jobs mainly deal with either chemistry, biology, fingerprints, or computers. In some cases, technicians may be cross trained to do more than one job if needed. Those who have aptitude in one of these areas may do very well in this career field. The key is to pay attention to details.

Those who have backgrounds in, or have studied, chemistry generally have a good chance to land forensic technician jobs. These individuals may test materials for the presence of substances such as blood or other bodily fluids. Knowing how those fluids react to certain chemicals, and how that may contaminate or destroy evidence is very important. For example, forensic technicians may have to determine the type of fabric of a certain clothing, and choose a testing chemical that is not going to hurt that fabric or alter the results of the test.

Forensic technician jobs could also include a great deal of biology. The technician may be responsible for not only identifying a bodily fluid, bodily tissue, or other such important identifiers, but determine to whom they belong. That can help to identify both the suspect and the victim, if the identities of either one are in question.

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In addition to these jobs, some forensic technicians may specialize specifically in fingerprints. In such cases, a technician may get a set of fingerprints that came from a suspect directly, or a crime scene, and try to match those up. Doing this requires learning about the ridges that make up fingerprints, and also requires a great deal of attention to detail, even if most of the matching is now done by computer. Technicians in these jobs may work for a local or state law enforcement agency, or a national agency.

A relatively new class of forensic technician jobs involves computers. Whether they are financial crimes, or a variety of other potential crimes, computers can hold a wealth of information that could be vital to an investigation. If a suspect tries to get rid of evidence, a computer forensic technician might be able to recover at least some of that information. In such cases, computer technicians could work hours on trying to restore and recover data that would otherwise be lost.

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