Motivated by his own curiosity, Dr Raymond Lutui came to AUT to complete his Doctor of Philosophy in Digital Forensics, the first person to do so at AUT.
Raymond was attracted to AUT because of its credibility worldwide, but also because of its known support for Māori and Pacific students.
“AUT is a university for the changing world, giving Māori and Pacific students the help they need by providing a hands-on experience.”
Raymond developed his interest in computers from an early age in Tonga when he provided desktop publishing services to his church.
“My main driver is my curiosity. I wanted to find out more about computers, which led to my interest in IT and then specifically forensic investigation.”
Raymond says digital forensics is a field that is yet to be truly explored.
“We are moving into an age of technology that allows us to do more than we ever could have imagined,” he says.
Raymond says the growth of communication technology is very fast, while the area of investigation is not.
Through research and existing literature, Raymond found that there is no worldwide investigation framework that can be applied in a multi-disciplinary environment. This means involving more than one technology in a criminal investigation.
In his doctoral thesis, Raymond developed two test scenarios that incorporated a mobile device, a network service and a cloud service. He was able to find a relationship between the three environments and find the evidence of a crime in all three environments. With this information, Raymond created an investigative framework that can be used in the future to investigate cybercrimes worldwide.
“If my research could open a new door of interest to anyone else with the same desire that I have for this field, then that would have made my journey all the more worthwhile,” he says.
Raymond’s research can be applied in any country, in any jurisdiction and is able to fit any agency's needs. This could help the Pacific Islands, which Raymond says are still developing in regards to technology.
“My research can adapt to technological change in a cost-effective way. So forensic experts around the Pacific can decide to use this as a baseline to develop their own legal requirements.”
Raymond has been awarded a Postdoctoral Fellowship with the Faculty of Design and Creative Technologies within the School of Engineering, Computer & Mathematical Sciences.
He will teach, mentor and most importantly, research. In his role, there is a focus on research publications to establish an academic career path, with hopes of progressing through AUT.
Raymond’s first year within the Faculty of Design and Creative Technologies is focused on research from his doctoral thesis. His second year will be to explore a new field: Robotics and Artificial Intelligence.
“This is something completely new for me and I am very excited to start learning all I can in these fields.”