The Kent State University Board of Trustees approved the establishment of a new cybercriminology major within the Bachelor of Science degree at the Board’s regular quarterly meeting held Dec. 6 in the Aeronautics and Engineering Building on the Kent Campus. The new cybercriminology major will be offered fully online, in addition to a mostly online delivery at all Kent State campuses.

Cybercriminology is a new and growing field that has demand from business and government entities due to its combining of computer and criminal justice knowledge and skills. It is the practice of investigating and preventing attacks and threats that exploit human or security weakness in systems to steal data, money or passwords or to target individuals or a group of individuals.

Students enrolled in the major will be involved in project-based research and other experiential learning opportunities in technology and the legal, ethical and criminology aspects of modern crime. Through this program, students will be well prepared for work in a myriad of professional positions ranging from security/intelligence analysts and investigators to network and security administrators. The cybercriminology major will be multidisciplinary with contributing faculty and coursework from the Department of Sociology and Criminology in the College of Arts and Sciences and the Information Technology program in the College of Applied and Technical Studies.

New job postings increased 79% over the past five years with most of those postings preferring or requiring a bachelor’s degree. Going forward, the occupational outlook in digital forensics analysis, penetration testing and information security analysis is projected to grow faster than average with 100,000-plus job openings by 2030.

The School of Multidisciplinary Social Sciences and Humanities within the College of Arts and Sciences will establish the new major, effective fall 2024, pending final approval of the Ohio Department of Higher Education.