Thursday, June 22, 2017

PCI PA/P2PE certifications

Took the Payment Application (PA) Qualified Security Assessor (QSA) exam back in March, just a couple of weeks after taking the Point to Point Encryption (P2PE) QSA exam. Surprisingly they both seemed fairly easy tests, the P2PE was a little harder since I had to study up on some crypto information.

Had been trying for a few months to assist with some P2PE assessment work, but it seems that is not as easy as I had hoped. Had asked to shadow some people or assist on small projects, but got nothing. I then asked to work on PA assessment, was invited out to the Colorado office to learn the internal processes, and go over some documents. Was asked if I was interested in joining the PA team by hte managing principal.

Finally decided to stop trying to get into the P2PE team, and took an opportunity on the PA team. Applied for a Senior Consultant position, but was only transferred over as a IT security Consultant. Not exactly sure what the deal is with promoting me to Senior, especially since I have more experience then most Senior Consultants that I have worked with so far. But that battle is for another day.

Will see how things go with doing the PA assessments, they do not seem to be very difficult, most of the testing is easy. The pentesting portion is kind of a joke, as they do only minor tests against SQLi, XSS, CSRF and buffer overflows. Almost makes me miss doing the pentesting stuff, and the exploiting software vulnerabilities.



Wednesday, January 4, 2017

Starting off 2017 right! (I hope.....)

Well its 2017 already, and I am not sure where 2016 went.

Last year I was extremely busy, traveling about every week and multiple ROC's due weekly for my previous company. Never had enough time to actually do my job well or even think about fixing the issues that we had. Now that I am at Coalfire, I have plenty of time to do my job, with tons of resources to help me out. I am not traveling as much, which I sort of miss, hope that changes a little starting soon. Working from home is a little weird, not sure it is something I really like, miss the interactions with other people. Not that I do not like my family, its just getting out of the house for a little while and talking to other people with similar interests. Will be trying to get former colleagues to do lunch once in a while to at least try to keep up with whats going on.

This year is starting off fairly decent for me, since I am getting to attend two different training classes. First one is an ISO 27001 Lead Auditor certification course. I will be heading to Colorado for a few days. The class was supposed to be for junior associates that needed a certification to allow them to get their QSA. I asked if their was space I would like to attend, and I guess there was room for me. The second class is PCI P2PE certification, which will be a little harder from my perspective. Most of my cryptography experience is military related and not really geared towards the commercial sector. If I pass this course, I have been asked if I wanted to take the PA-DSS course and then possibly the PA-P2PE course. Since they are in need of people to assist in that area, I said why not. I am always willing to take training classes, certifications never hurt anyone.

So it looks like my first full ROC I am lead on will be a client that they have had for a while. This should be fairly nice to get to learn their methodology, and show my manager, I am able to do the work. I was brought in as a consultant, and not a senior consultant. That was something I had decided to do, I originally had interviewed for a senior security consultant position, but since they were willing to pay me the same for either position, I took the lower level position. I am sure some are going WTF, I would never do that. Well, I am more than capable to be a senior consultant, but If I come in as a junior level person and can show that I am very good at my job, I will more than likely get a promotion or possibly opportunities to do other stuff. Which is sort of what is happening already with the certification courses.

Well 2017, lets hope things keep rolling along smoothly.....