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Personal profile

Personal profile

  • 1984 - 1988    Sunderland Polytechnic.  BSc Hons Combined Studies in Science (Computing Science and Applied Physics).
  • 1992 - 1998    University of Sunderland.  PhD - thesis entitled "An Investigation into MetaCASE and Object Orientation".
  • 1996 - 1998    University of Sunderland:  CERT.Ed (HE) Certificate in Education - (Higher Education).
  • 1988 - 1991    Development Engineer.  Saxon Micro Ltd - Newmarket.  Involved with the development of hardware and software for medical technology.  Included work on robotic micro-manipulators, genetic fingerprint analysis and image processing.
  • 1991 - 1992    Project Engineer.  Enstec Consultants - Cambridge.  Worked as a consultant on safety critical environmental monitoring software for (amongst others) British Nuclear Fuels.  Responsible for management of major monitoring project of BNFL Sellafield.
  • 1995 - 2000    Senior Lecturer.  University of Sunderland, School of Computing, Engineering and Technology
  • 2000 - 2010    Lecturer.  University of Strathclyde, Department of Computer and Information Sciences
  • 2010 - present    Lecturer.  University of Abertay Dundee, School of Computing and Engineering Systems




Dr Ferguson has taught extensively (since 1995)  at all levels from first year undergraduate to postgraduate levels. Topics include:

  • Digital Forensics,
  • Computer Architecture,
  • Operating Systems,
  • Computer Graphics,
  • Distributed Programming,
  • Mobile Systems,
  • Object Oriented Analysis, Design and Programming
  • Agent-based Systems. 

Winner of the Abertay Student-led Teaching Award for "Creative and Innovative Teaching" 2011-12 - Many thanks to all of you who voted for me - most unexpected!

Research interests

Dr Ian Ferguson is a Senior Lecturer in Digital Forensics at Abertay University. His research interests lie in developing more effective methodologies, techniques and tools to aid the investigation of cybercrime particularly in distributed, mobile and IoT systems.

Dr. R.I. Ferguson gained his PhD in Software Engineering from the University of Sunderland in 1998.

Whilst at the University of Sunderland, he established a publication record in the fields of software engineering and mobile-agent based systems.  Between 2000 and 2010 at the University of Strathclyde he was a member of Smartlab (the Pervasive and Ubiquitous Computing Group)  where he successfully supervised (5) PhDs on agent based middleware for group communication, quality metrics for context data in ubiquitous computing, semi-structured databases and scalable distributed indexing systems.

Since arriving at the University of Abertay Dundee in 2010 his work has concentrated on digital forensics and applying visualization and GPGPU techniques to problems in digital forensic analysis. He is currently supervising 4 PhDs looking a IoT security and forensic analysis of IoT systems.



KTP (details to be added)

Microsoft (details to be added)

SLIC (details to be added)

Innovation Vouchers


  • 2017 - Member of the SICSA CyberNexus Review College
  • In 2005, Dr. Ferguson was the publicity chair of the European Conference on Object Oriented Programming (ECOOP 2005)  
  • Co-Organiser First Int’l Conf. on MetaCASE (MetaCASE ‘95), Co-organiser 2nd International Symposium on Constructing Software Engineering Tools (CoSET 2000)
  • External Examiner - University of Hull (MSc Distributed Systems Development), University of Lincoln (BSc/HND Computing) (2004-2007)
  • External Examiner - MSc Distributed Computing - University of Teesside (2007-2011)
  • External Examiner - University of Lincoln (2006-2009 )
  • External Examiner - University of Greenwich (2008 - 2012)
  • External Examiner - Staffordshire University (2008 - 2012)
  • External examiner - Universit yof Sunderland (2015-2020)
  • External Examiner - Canterbury Christchurch University (2016 - )
  • Regular reviewer for Software Practise and Experience, IEEE Transaction of Software Engineering, and the SIGIR conference and International Workshop on Middleware for Pervasive and Ad-Hoc Computing.
  • Dr Ferguson has acted as external examiner for PhD on 5 occasions including the Universities of Hull, St Andrews and Sunderland.

Knowledge Exchange

Recent projects include work supported by the SHEFCE Innovation Voucher scheme on Digital Rights Management, but details are commercial and in confidence.


I seem to have my contact details on a list circulating inside the BBC and am trotted out whenever they need someone to interview about cybersecurity.  Recent interviews have included:

  • TV - BBC Reporting Scotland - Interview on Digital Forensic aspects of the Glasgow Airport bombings  (08)
  • Radio - BBC Reporting Scotland - Interview on government emphasis on need for business to respond to cybercrime threat (Sep 12)
  • Radio - BBC London - Interview on the Vanessa Phelps(?) show (2012)
  • Radio - BBC Wales - Interview on gov't designation of cybercrime as 'Tier 1 Threat" (2011)
  • Radio - BBC Scotland (Reporting Scotland) - Interview on gov't designation of cybercrime as 'Tier 1 Threat" (2011)
  • Radio - BBC Scotland - Part of 30 min programme on Cybersecurity and Ethical Hacking (2011)

Press articles

  • Amercian Forces Network (2010)
  • The Courier (2010)

Invited Talks

  • Cafe Science - Oct 2012 - Digital Forensics vs Sex, Drugs and Rock and Roll

Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 4 - Quality Education
  • SDG 9 - Industry, Innovation, and Infrastructure
  • SDG 16 - Peace, Justice and Strong Institutions


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