Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Training, conferences and contacts. Oh My!

Professional development: The process of increasing the professional capabilities of one's self by attending training or meetings of like-minded professionals who are willing to share information and techniques.

This week I'm attending a FEMA course called "Cybersecurity: Incident Handling and Response".  So far it has been review but it looks promising for the next 3 days.  It is a free course if one is in your area but seating is limited. I recommend checking it out. I'll provide a full review after the course is over.

If you've been following the blog you know that I am a major proponent of professional networking. It's a great way to meet people that you may be able to employ or gain employment from, there are also lots of people that just know a lot about security, forensics, hacking, etc. that are willing to share ideas and tips.  I had no idea that there was already a group of these people that meet regularly here in Helena and have for some time.  2 hours into class and I had an invite to the local DEFCON group. First Friday of the month at the best sandwich shop in town? Done.  It simply can't hurt to get yourself known inside local circles.

Speaking of DEFCON, I'll be attending in Las Vegas this year. It will be the first time I've ever attended any kind of hacking conference and I'm pretty stoked to check it out.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Baby Steps

Getting into digital forensics is a tough job.  Writing about it regularly is even tougher.  Since passing the exam, I have been working on a marketing package to pass out around town, had meetings with my bosses trying to convince them that "Yah. Really. We can charge $225/hr and up for these services", landed my first official retainer fee, set up a proposal for e-discovery work and performed my regular myriad of break-fix, server upgrade and auditing work. I've also helped produce an outline for a book idea with my good friend and forensic-y mentor Chris and sent in a column idea to Into the Boxes. It's been a bit of a whirlwind, but never you mind. I live to serve.

I was contacted by a civil defense lawyer about the feasibility of admitting all the content of a Yahoo user group into court.  I mulled it over a bit and tried out a few techniques I've learned over the years for dumping websites, did a little proof-of-concept and turned in an estimate for work. This could turn into a significant amount of work sorting, searching and carving usable info for the defense.  I accomplished my proof of concept using a combination of freebie web tools and some yellow-belt linux kung-fu.  If I land it and wind up doing all the work I'll be sure to post a more in depth analysis.

I updated my resume, wrote a Curriculum Vitae, created a sheet of services my company can offer and turned it all over to our technical writers and marketing people. I hope I don't get a pile of useless mush with pretty colors back.