3 Tips For Learning Security
One of the foremost think tanks in security is a man named Bruce Schneier and he provides excellent advice for anyone learning to get into computer security but the this can apply across multiple domains:
- Study. Studying can take many forms. It can be classwork, either at universities or at training conferences like SANS and Offensive Security. (These are good self-starter resources.) It can be reading; there are a lot of excellent books out there — and blogs — that teach different aspects of computer security out there. Don’t limit yourself to computer science, either. You can learn a lot by studying other areas of security, and soft sciences like economics, psychology, and sociology.
- Do. Computer security is fundamentally a practitioner’s art, and that requires practice. This means using what you’ve learned to configure security systems, design new security systems, and — yes — break existing security systems. This is why many courses have strong hands-on components; you won’t learn much without it.
- Show. It doesn’t matter what you know or what you can do if you can’t demonstrate it to someone who might want to hire you. This doesn’t just mean sounding good in an interview. It means sounding good on mailing lists and in blog comments. You can show your expertise by making podcasts and writing your own blog. You can teach seminars at your local user group meetings. You can write papers for conferences, or books.
Bruce goes on to explain that he is a fan of security certifications and I’d have to agree wholeheartedly with him. If you’re a high speed learning then jumping straight into a certification is a great way to get infront of the crowd in this field albeit, certifications often get a bad rap from the security community as not reflecting our day to day relaity. To a degree they are correct but regardless, security certifications demonstrate to your employer or future employer that you’re committed and you’ve have the know-how to get the job done or to learn how to get the job done.
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