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Starting Point With Security


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Hey all. I'm interested in getting into network security maybe not as a profession but who knows. I'm currently in HR and get to spend some of my spare time putting out fires with the IT guys. I am quit good at social engineering and have really changed alot of the company policies to better secure the biggest flaw in the company..... the employees. I'm a very tech savvy person but am not sure where to direct my spare time from where I am. I'm currently getting better at Linux but still not great. As far as programming languages I know just enough Java to mess around with android (tread water) and while not a true programming language I am a javascript blackbelt. I set up a dummy router at home with some VMs to beat at with Backtrack but not much else in the world of experience with hacking. Only 25 and heading back for my MBA soon so.... either as a hobby or if I end up liking it maybe a profession change where do I go now? Should I learn Python or C, should I learn the material for things like network+ or security+? If I enjoy it should I pay and get the cert or even take the focus of my MBA from management to advanced IS? Any insight would be great thanks!

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C and Python would be good languages to learn, learn C first then Python. I'd also encourage you to do certifications, whilst they may not seem effective at determining someone's experience, they will make your resume look good, when hunting for a job.

Apart from these certs, network+ or security+, I'd also go for the CCNA and CEH.

Edited by Infiltrator
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... and while not a true programming language I am a javascript blackbelt.

Who told you that lie? JavaScript is absolutely a "true programming language". It might not be a native-compiled system language, but it is definitely a true programming language.

either as a hobby or if I end up liking it maybe a profession change where do I go now?

I recommend visiting whatever hackerspaces you can find in your area.

Should I learn Python or C,

I agree with Infiltrator's suggestion of learning C and then Python.

http://learnproglang.couch.it/

should I learn the material for things like network+ or security+? If I enjoy it should I pay and get the cert

Yes and yes. Certs are a quick and easy way to pad a resume and you'll get some insight into what the job will be like.

or even take the focus of my MBA from management to advanced IS? Any insight would be great thanks!

I don't have any experience with MBAs so I can't advise you there.

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You've gotten some good advice so far, but I'd like to add that you don't have to start in any particular place. Work on what interests you and what you're passionate about, without that curiosity and passion this stuff can turn into a chore!

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