Don’t Trust an #NCSC Accredited CyberSecurity Degree

The United Kingdom isn’t as advanced in CyberSecurity as they’d like you to think.

United Kingdom doesn’t have a Defcon Conference. They did however have the occasional #ALTPH2600 meeting.

United States Does

China Does

India Does

Def Con is a hacker conference started in 1993

DEF CON (also written as DEFCON, Defcon or DC) is one of the world’s largest and most notable hacker conventions, held annually in Las Vegas, Nevada. The first DEF CON took place in June 1993 and today many attendees at DEF CON include computer security professionals, journalists, lawyers, federal government employees, security researchers, students, and hackers with a general interest in software, computer architecture, hardware modification, conference badges, and anything else that can be “hacked”. The event consists of several tracks of speakers about computer- and hacking-related subjects, as well as cyber-security challenges and competitions (known as hacking wargames). Contests held during the event are extremely varied, and can range from creating the longest Wi-Fi connection to finding the most effective way to cool a beer in the Nevada heat.

Other contests, past and present, include lockpicking, robotics-related contests, art, slogan, coffee wars, scavenger hunt and Capture the Flag. Capture the Flag (CTF) is perhaps the best known of these contests and is a hacking competition where teams of hackers attempt to attack and defend computers and networks using software and network structures. CTF has been emulated at other hacking conferences as well as in academic and military contexts (as red team exercises).

Federal law enforcement agents from the FBI, DoD, United States Postal Inspection Service, DHS (via CISA) and other agencies regularly attend DEF CON.

The UK has only been Cyber Orientated since I tried to establish Uberex UK, prior to that no company has been openly concerned about CyberSecurity, being a hacker was a shadow job and not recognized as a legitimate trade – An in order to generate funds they launched a “Cyber Essentials” product that no other country has. The UK is usually first to launch ridiculous products, like unsinkable ships and coating a high rise tower in flammable material.

Several Autistic hackers have breached a number of “CyberProtect” services built by the UK and plenty of scam sites offering to teach CyberSecurity to non technical users in a matter of months. Promising high salaries, yet putting the businesses that hire them at risk, as they’d like experience in the trade.

Financially motivated hackers are a business risk, look at Jurassic Park’s Dennis Nedry the computer scientist that took down a whole park in a matter of seconds, keen on making a few extra bucks. Computer Science and Programming is well paid, you can get quite rich if you take the slow and steady route. With salaries starting at 3000 per month, many people would dream for that kind of money hitting their bank account each month.

But it also opens up the trade to a lot of technical cowboys, the whole reason that we have CyberSecurity is due to a decade of lazy system admins. That rely on others for security tips and cannot think for themselves. Copying security tactics and not thinking outside the box, just creates generic attack vectors.

I’m currently studying CyberSecurity Law, as a degree, as I wanted to learn more, when i studyed back in 2008 it wasn’t like it is now, the knowledge isn’t out of date, however I enjoy learning but not in the UK, as I feared I’d fall asleep and lose interest. Study in India, China, Israel, UAE, United States – But not the United Kingdom. If you want to study something in the United Kingdom perhaps take a medical degree, not cybersecurity.

I was skeptical about these NCSC accredited courses, from a country that less than a decade ago treated hackers, as if they were a bad omen. Any Software Engineer has the potential to become a hackers, it’s dependent on experience and the willingness to learn

Taz Ryder

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