Archive for the ‘External Training’ Category

Insider’s Guide to a SANS Conference – Day 3

If you have been following my Twitter hastag for the event (#SANS_PHX), you probably realized that this was my favorite day of course material simply because this is the day we covered WIRELESS.  wOOt!  

SANS should really have a six day track focused on Wireless Ethical Hacking, Pen Testing, and Defenses… oh wait, they do have that and I have already taken it.  😉  

At any rate, the Security Leadership Essentials course material focused on “Communications Security” today with sections on wireless & bluetooth, cryptography, steganography, OPSEC, etc.  

One question that the wireless module brought up in my mind was “how many organizations audit for Bluetooth?”  My guess is that few organizations even scan for Bluetooth.  Even if they do, I think that only a handful doa complete audit that includes more advanced sniffing, pen testing, or vulnerability assessment/exploitation.  

The MGMT 512 course also had a bonus talk from Rich Mogull about the current state of the industry – good stuff! 

Lastly, today’s conference also included a vendor fair.  Michael Farnum just wrote a blog post about how much he enjoys working “booth duty” at such events because it allows him be more of a security evangelist.  As a vendor, I can relate to Michael and his feelings of working the booth.  I also enjoy being a conference attendee on the other side of the booth as it allows me to expand my knowledge and participate in meaningful discussions with people who share my passion for networking & security.  

Sorry, no conference pictures today.  Someone should send me a tweet mid-day to remind me to grab a few for tomorrow’s blog post!  

Related Posts: 

Insider’s Guide to a SANS Conference – Day 2

Insider’s Guide to a SANS Conference – Day 1

Insider’s Guide to a SANS Conference – Setup


Insider’s Guide to a SANS Conference – Day 2

I’ll cut to the chase and give you the bottom line up front…

My favorite part of today’s conference were the SANS @night presentations.  These are optional (and free) presentations that the SANS Institute supports on selected evenings of their conferences.    One of today’s @night talks covered Web App Security and the other covered Man-in-the-Middle Attacks. 


SANS @night Talk

SANS @night Talk


Web App security was given by Rich Mogull (@rmogull) and the MitM Attack talk was given by Bryce Galbraith.  Saying that they were *PACKED* with information is an understatement.   There are many intangible benefits of attending a SANS conference, and the @night presentations definitely top that list!

I also enjoyed my “normal” course, “Security Leadership Essentials for Managers”.  I particularly enjoyed the conversation around malware and endpoint security.   My take-away is that white listing is the future in this area.  I Tweeted about this realization on my Twitter timeline (@wifijedib). 

There were also a few logistical challenges today – the first was that one of the instructors came down with bronchitis and lost his voice.  The SANS conference staff were able to schedule temporary work-around and work in a backup instructor in an incredibly short amount of time.   Also, there was an internet outage at the conference hotel.  Again, the conference staff worked tirelessly to resolve and developed an immediate work around.   I was impressed with their ability to handle these situationshow strong are your business continuity processes

Related Posts:

Insider’s Guide to a SANS Conference – Setup

Insider’s Guide to a SANS Conference – Day 1

Insider’s Guide to a SANS Conference – Day 1

If you are reading this, it means that we both survived Day 1 of SANS Phoenix.  🙂  

My favorite part of the day was helping everyone at the registration desk.  It was fun meeting so many different people. There seemed to be a good mix of people returning to SANS as well as first time conference attendees.  

Stephen Northcutt gave a short “Welcome to SANS” briefing this morning.  I wasn’t able to attend as I was at the registration desk (see above).  

Classes kicked off at 9AM and most ran until approx. 5:30-6:00PM.  I know that we covered a TON of information in the MGMT 512 (Security Leadership Essentials for Managers) course.  We talked about budgeting, project management, vulnerability management, and vendor selection processes.   

Even though I am in a Management course, there was a great deal of technical information covered in Day 1.  We discussed the TCP/IP header, ports/protocols, and packet analysis.  At one point I felt like Neo in The Matrix – (paraphasing more than an exact quote…) “what do you see in the matrix?  ones and zeros?  I see a blonde.  I see a brunette.” 

Logistically, everything seemed to run smoothly.  As always with big conference rooms and theaters, the temperature runs cold, so don’t forget to bring a sweater or light jacket with you tomorrow.  🙂  

There was a SANS@night talk regarding Honeypots, which I missed.  I am excited to see Rich Mogull’s SANS@night talk tomorrow night as he and I are connected on Twitter (@rmogull

Speaking of Twitter, I “tweeted” about the conference at least a half dozen times today.  You can search for the hashtag #SANS_PHX or follow me (@wifijedi) to see the updates.

SANS Phoenix – Upcoming Interview

As many of you already know, I am taking the SANS Security Leadership Essentials course at the upcoming SANS Conference in Phoenix, Mar 23-30th. It is being taught by none other than Stephen Northcutt, President of the SANS Institute.  

I caught up with Stephen earlier this week on LinkedIn and told him that I will be blogging and Tweeting about the event in near real time.  I also asked if I could interview him for, to which he agreed.   

Please leave me a comment or send me an email, Tweet, etc. if you have something specific that you would like me to address in the interview.   

Related Posts: 

SANS Phoenix – Update

A couple weeks ago, I wrote a post announcing that I will be taking the Security Leadership Essentials course at SANS Phoenix, 2009.   The conference is being held March 23-30, 2009.

I will be blogging about the event, so check back around that time to hear my thoughts on the course!   As I said in my previous post, I am participating in the SANS Work-Study program, which I think is a tremendous value.  

I am excited about two updates to my conference registration.  First, I am also taking the SANS 2 day course on the Payment Card Industry (PCI) Standard.  Second, I am getting access to the SANS On-Demand training for both of these courses.  On-Demand is another cool option for training in this economy – solid computer based training with no travel costs!  Both of these are included with my registration under the work study program!  

Have you taken a SANS course?  What did you think?  What do you think of SANS?   A couple of years ago, there was a session at ShmooCon entitled Anti-SANS (or something of the sort).  It was a very spirited debate to say the least.  I would love to hear what you think of SANS – good, bad, or indifferent!

Security Leadership Essentials

I am excited to announce that I will be attending the SANS Conference here in Phoenix March 23rd – 30th, 2009.

I have taken several SANS Courses before, including “Wireless Ethical Hacking, Pen Testing, and Defenses” and “Securing Windows”.  This go around I will be taking “SANS Security Leadership Essentials for Managers“.   The course is being taught by the President of the SANS Institute, Stephen Northcutt.

They are actually running 9 different courses in the areas of Management, Audit, Security, and Development.  No promises, but if you are interested in joining me at the Phoenix conference, send me an email at and I will try to hook you up with a 10% discount!

I am taking part in SANS work-study program.  It is where I am going to help them set up the conference, assist with on-site registration, help monitor the book store, and serve as an in-class volunteer.  In exchange, SANS is offering a steeply discounted tuition rate – a great program, especially in this economy!

I plan on blogging about the course, so definitely check back to hear my thoughts on the good, bad, and the ugly!   Have you taken a SANS course? What did you think?  If you haven’t, which of their courses sounds the most interesting to you?   Sound off by submitting a comment below!