Recognition of Excellence at Null Byte (Fellows, Awards, Recommendations, & Certifications)
As most of you know, Null Byte has grown dramatically in the past year. In that time, Null Byte has more than doubled in size, and in the most recent months, the growth seems to have accelerated. This is clearly an indication that we are serving a need for white hat penetration testing and information security educational needs. I expect that our growth, if handled with wisdom and prudence, will continue.
From the comments and emails I receive, it has become clear that many of you want to develop a career in cyber security, whether as pentesters, cyber security engineers, cyber espionage, cyber warriors, or the myriad of occupations we have not even imagined yet. This field is growing by leaps and bounds and expanding into multiple new and unimagined areas.
As we have grown, we have gathered a community from around the globe that includes everyone from the greenest newbie to the most sophisticated hackers. Those who are raw newbies today are likely to be the sophisticated hackers of tomorrow. As such, I want to recognize some of the extraordinary talent that has been collected here in Null Byte and provide incentives for newbies to become sophisticated hackers.
Also, I know that many of you are looking to find jobs in this industry, looking to get into college, etc., and I want Null Byte to be a stepping stone to a successful career in cyber security. To assist you in your pursuit, I am implementing some new programs to recognize and certify the talents of our members.
First, I am beginning a program of Null Byte fellows. These are members of our community with experience and education that can be helpful to our fellow members. I will be selecting 2-3 initially, and their job will be to assist other less-experienced members of our community and help our community continue to grow.
For those of you who are non-native English speakers (that's a majority here), a fellow is: a member of a group of learned people who work together as peers in the pursuit of mutual knowledge or practice.
Second, I will be awarding the "White Hat Award for Technical Excellence" at various times in the future. These awards will go to those who produce excellent articles for our community.
Obviously, those who receive such awards should be able to put such an award on their resume or college application to help land that job and place in that school. I think it goes without saying that having published a good article in a leading cyber security forum would be a quite a fete, but having received an award for technical excellence would be even more impressive.
I realize that many of you are now, or will soon be, applying for jobs and entrance to colleges and technical institutes. I am willing to offer recommendations to those of you who show excellence either in providing content or helping other users here on Null Byte.
If you believe that you have shown exceptional talents in providing content or assisting other users, feel free to ask me for a recommendation. I will be happy to write one for you.
If you are new here, please do not ask me for a recommendation. Only those who have been members for awhile and have shown mastery of the subject matter will be eligible for college or job recommendations. If I agree to write you a recommendation, it will be glowing and likely play a key role in getting you into the school of your choice or the job you are seeking.
I am presently developing a three-tier "White Hat" certification for the readers of Null Byte. Certifications are a key way to validate your technical acumen for employers and schools. Our industry, information technology (IT) and cyber security, places a much higher value on certifications than formal education. As such, these become critical to finding employment in our industry.
The advantages of these new certifications are:
- All of the material you need to study is right here on Null Byte. No need to buy expensive study guides, books, or pricey boot camps.
- All of the exams can be taken online so you don't need to travel to a special testing center.
- The cost of the exams and certifications will be a fraction of those by EC-Council, ISACA, ISC2, SANS, and others.
These certifications will be similar to the CEH, ESCA, OSCP, GPEN and others. These certifications will include:
Certified WhiteHat Associate (CWA)
This certification will be similar to the CEH. It will test your understanding of basic cyber security, hacking, and pentration testing concepts. It will be a 100 question, online exam. One should be able to pass the exam by simply studying the tutorials here on Null Byte. This will be an entry-level pentesting certification.
Certified WhiteHat Engineer (CWE)
This is an intermediate-level certification where the student will be required to understand some intermediate pentesting and techniques, as well as demonstrate their skills by hacking a test system. Unlike the CWA, it will require real world skills that are valued by employers.
Certified White Hat Professional (CWP)
This is the most advanced hacking certification. It will require advanced skills and knowledge and will require that those certified be able to compromise a fairly well-secured system.
Certified Cyber Warrior (CCW)
This certification will require that the student master both offensive and defensive cyber security methods. In addition, the student will be required to understand the basic methodologies, history, and policy of cyber warfare. This certification is for those who seek a career with national governments that are, or expect to be, involved in cyber warfare or cyber espionage.
Look for more information on these certifications this winter (December - March).
Please give me feedback and thoughts on these programs to recognize your excellence and any others that might be valuable to recognize the extraordinary talent in our community here at Null Byte.