From Brussels to Amsterdam calling at London and Sydney

That’s been what I call my ‘SANS itinerary’ since I started this exciting journey back in June 2007. It all started at SANS Secure Europe, in Brussels, where I took my first SANS class with Jess Garcia, CEO of One eSecurity and a good friend of mine. It was SECURITY 508, System Forensics, Investigation & Response, an awesome track created by Rob Lee on one of the most interesting and hot topics of Information Security. It’s been almost two years since then, but now I realize the tremendous positive influence that event had in my career as a security professional.

Early on the first day, I could see that was a different kind of training, far different from all the training sessions I had attended before, including the well-known CISSP bootcamp and vendor specific training like Checkpoint‘s and others I took in the past. Unlike those, this was real hands-on training, with lots of exercises and challenges, including the use of several virtual machines and an arsenal of security tools you can take home with you. Also, the amount of material you receive throughout a 6-day course is awesome. Someone described it like “drinking directly from a fire hose”. Actually, I can’t describe it better.

Add to that a friendly, relaxed but yet professional atmosphere, and the multiple opportunities you get for both networking and sheer knowledge with attendees and instructors and you will understand why Brussels was only the start.

SANS Secure Europe 2007

With Carlos Fragoso and Richard Fadul at SANS Secure Europe 2007 in Brussels

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When chocolate becomes a security threat

Chocolate!Whilst some researchers point out that chocolate may provide health benefits that include decreasing the risk factors for certain heart related diseases, further research indicates that it can also become a security threat, specially when women are around!

I know it sounds funny, but so claims latest survey conducted by Infosecurity Europe over 576 office workers in London. According to that research, women are four times more likely than men to give out their passwords in exchange for a chocolate bar (45% of women compared to 10% of men).

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Just passed my GIAC Certified Intrusion Analyst (GCIA) exam!

GCIAYes! I’m just writing my first post from the Apple Store at Regent Street (London) to let you know that I’ve just passed my SANS GCIA exam. Indeed, I know it could have been better (scored 89%) and that I scored even more on my first GIAC exam (GCFA -Forensics Analyst- that I took on 2007), but hey, analysing large network dumps is not that easy. Anyway, another nice acronym to add to my signature ;)

By the way, I thought there was no better place to start my new blog than right from where I am. If you keep reading my blog (thanks for that) you will see there are many things I enjoy. One of those is traveling, and London is one of my favourites places, and other one is technology, specially anything related to Information Security. And yes, that includes Macs! In fact I’m currently typing in one of the new iMacs, and you know how difficult is to find a free one, if you have ever been here.

Well, let’s keep this post short for now. I’m heading to the airport to catch my flight back home. I’ll be posting here soon, so stay tuned.