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Dept. of Homeland Security To Build Better Cyber Workforce

samzenpus posted more than 2 years ago | from the assemble-the-team dept.

Security 57

coondoggie writes "Secretary of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano today said the agency will form a cybersecurity workforce task group that will consider strategies such as expanding DHS involvement in cyber competitions and university programs, enhancing public-private security partnerships and working with other government agencies to develop a more agile cyber workforce across the federal government. The new task force will be co-chaired by hacking expert Jeff Moss who now works for the Homeland Security Advisory Council and Alan Paller is director of research at the SANS Institute."

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first step (5, Interesting)

ravenspear (756059) | more than 2 years ago | (#40241527)

Stop calling it "cyber".

Re:first step (5, Insightful)

Scorch_Mechanic (1879132) | more than 2 years ago | (#40241625)

Stop calling it "cyber".

As much as I dislike the word "cyber" and the overuse of it as a prefix, it's not really "wrong" anymore. It's been used so much that it has acquired legitimacy and meaning in the eyes of the masses, even if we who are computer-aware still wince when someone says it on air.

When a scumbag (read: politician) says "cybersecurity", you and I both know that he means "computer/network/information security", even as we groan. Much as we wish it were not so, it's the way things are now.

Sorry.

Re:first step (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40241783)

Much as we wish it were not so, it's the way things are now, FOR THEM.

There will always be stip kids in the playground and someone will have to talk to them at a level they understand. It turns out out there are far more of THEM than US and the all have a vote.

Re:first step (3, Informative)

networkconsultant (1224452) | more than 2 years ago | (#40243469)

We should thank William Gibson once more.

Cybermen (2)

Roger W Moore (538166) | more than 2 years ago | (#40243671)

As much as I dislike the word "cyber" and the overuse of it as a prefix, it's not really "wrong" anymore.

I agree, particularly in the context of US Homeland security we should refer to the new workforce as cybermen [wikipedia.org] : emotionless, de-humanized creatures who have no compassion. Not only will this likely be accurate but it might also stop them using the term 'cyber' for everything.

Re:first step (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40241631)

I used to think the same.

Perhaps it's just stockholme syndrome but after a few years working in Government in an area that uses the 'cyber' word heavily, I've just given up. Unfortunately it's just not going anywhere. :/

Re:first step (2, Informative)

geekgirlandrea (1148779) | more than 2 years ago | (#40242057)

Whenever someone says 'cyber' unironically, just think of it as shorthand for "I'm a blithering nitwit and you should ignore anything I say from here on."

Re:first step (2)

Johann Lau (1040920) | more than 2 years ago | (#40242379)

Nah, I'll just think if it as shorthand for "cybersex" and listen and nod enthusiastically... the Cyber Workforce! For, you know, "working guys". Heh.

Re:first step (4, Funny)

geekgirlandrea (1148779) | more than 2 years ago | (#40242401)

Send in a resume claiming to be BloodNinja [ambrosiasw.com] ?

Re:first step (1)

Johann Lau (1040920) | more than 2 years ago | (#40242439)

Ohh! I haven't read this in a loong time, and now my belly hurts from laughing so much. Thanks :D

Re:first step (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40243095)

Whenever someone gets really twisted up about the term "cyber", just think of it as a way of saying "I have zero security expertise, and don't understand why people would use a blanket term that covers computer, network, information and communications security". They're not using a term that's somehow incorrect, like how Macs are PCs, this is a relevant term that has stuck to the discipline throughout the industry.

Re:first step (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40249375)

Cyber has a bad rap because it's always used by idiots. It admittedly has some valid use but it's association with housewives, information superhighways, and AOL leaves a bad taste in the mouth.

Re:first step (1, Troll)

shoehornjob (1632387) | more than 2 years ago | (#40242719)

Stop calling it "cyber".

It's gubbermint... They don't know better.

Re:first step (1)

ark1 (873448) | more than 2 years ago | (#40242949)

Stop calling it "cyber".

I hate the word with a passion when used in this context but what alternative would you use? It has to be a single word or an expression that describes it all - Computer Security, Information Security, Network Security etc...

Re:first step (1)

SCHecklerX (229973) | more than 2 years ago | (#40243829)

Came here to say exactly this. Government loves that prefix. It's nauseating.

This can't be good. (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40241549)

-- Waiting in line at the airport terminal

Excuse me, sir.

Your laptop is of considerable interest to us.

-- DHS security walks in and takes the laptop

You wonder how America got to this point.

Re:This can't be good. (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40241683)

You wonder how America got to this point.

America is dead and gone. This country is not the one my ancestors fled Eastern Europe for and it is not the country my wife and I grew up in. That America was killed off by the greed heads and complacent, The downward spiral has begun and I suspect I will live to see the end of this empire. A friend of mine is a Rastafarian who refers to this empire as Bayblon. The more I listen to him the more I have to agree; Babylon will fall.

Re:This can't be good. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40241825)

You wonder how America got to this point.

Well for the UK we stopped being able to send our 'utter bastards' abroad to subjugate the natives of foreign lands and repatriate their assets. Once they stayed home and remained in the home population the results where as you would expect.

Since america is still actively sending their 'utter bastards' abroad either its different for them or when their sphere of influence collapses their going to in real trouble.

Re:This can't be good. (1)

lister king of smeg (2481612) | more than 2 years ago | (#40257757)

That because we Americans are the descendent of those utter bastards you sent out, only these utter bastards decided not to repatriate their assets to you any more.

Re:This can't be good. (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40242067)

The answer: Too few did anything about it.

"develop a more agile cyber workforce". . . ? (1)

PolygamousRanchKid (1290638) | more than 2 years ago | (#40241561)

Well, finally I have an answer when all those pesky non-IT folks ask me what I do:

"I'm developing a more agile cyber workforce."

Delivered with an absolute deadpan face and voice. I will answer any follow up questions with:

"We are currently implementing plans to size the effort."

DHS, eh? Well, does this program make you feel more secure . . . ?

Key words... (4, Funny)

davester666 (731373) | more than 2 years ago | (#40241563)

'agile' 'cybersecurity'

They need to flesh out these ideas with words like:
"realtime"
"game-changing"
"web 2.0"
"P3"
"next-gen"
"hyper-local"

Re:Key words... (4, Funny)

foobsr (693224) | more than 2 years ago | (#40241835)

http://emptybottle.org/bullshit/index.php

"Hey Kids! It's The Web 2.0 Bullshit Generator"

CC.

Re:Key words... (1)

DarkOx (621550) | more than 2 years ago | (#40242529)

We need something better. There was a buzzword utility that used to come with Dillbert's Desktop Games. What was neat is you could type a few sentences in plain English. It understood enough grammar rules and knew what part of speech the words you typed were that it could inject the buzzwords into your original text, obscuring but not really altering the meaning.

It usually left you with something ready to paste into the e-mail reply to your idiot co-workers. Usually that something was good enough to keep them busy parsing, and away from your cube, long enough for you get another coffee.

Re:Key words... (1)

White Flame (1074973) | more than 2 years ago | (#40248821)

"web 2.0"

I think we're up to "web 3.0" now in terms of bleeding-edge buzzword BS.

Re:Key words... (1)

lister king of smeg (2481612) | more than 2 years ago | (#40257775)

but in the cloud

Hay america (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40241583)

feeling safer yet?

Nothing better than mission creap in search of relevence.

Politics and necessity (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40241629)

You know, when politics get involved, it's rarely for the greater good.

There are a lot of good men and women that should be involved that never will, because they'll do the right thing, regardless of political pressure.

Sounds more like an expansion of the MIC. (2)

Uberbah (647458) | more than 2 years ago | (#40241715)

MIC being the military-industrial complex, or as I like to call it, the military-industrial-congressional-contractor-prison-surveillance complex. Young people, go get computer science degrees with a specialization in security, so you can either work for the Pentagon or work for contractors working for the Pentagon.

Greenwald: [salon.com]

The U.S. is the leading developer and perpetrator of cyberwarfare, not the leading target. The New York Times this morning has a long excerpt from a new book by its hawkish national security reporter David Sanger â" the book is entitled âoeConfront and Conceal: Obamaâ(TM)s Secret Wars and Surprising Use of American Powerâ â" which reveals that President Obama personally oversaw the development, and ordered the deployment, of the worldâ(TM)s most sophisticated computer virus, unleashed (in cooperation with Israel) on Iranâ(TM)s nuclear enrichment facility.

Isnâ(TM)t it amazing how the U.S. is constantly the worldâ(TM)s first nation to use new, highly destructive weapons â" at the same time that it bombs, invades, and kills more than any other country by far â" and yet it still somehow gets its media to tell its citizenry that it is Americaâ(TM)s Enemies who are the aggressors and the U.S. is simply a nation of peace seeking to defend itself.

Needless to say, if any cyber-attack is directed at the U.S. â" rather than by the U.S. â" it will be instantly depicted as an act of unparalleled aggression and evil: Terrorism. Just last year, the Pentagon decreed that any cyberattack on the U.S. would be deemed âoean act of war.â

Re:Sounds more like an expansion of the MIC. (1)

AHuxley (892839) | more than 2 years ago | (#40241889)

Get them young, give them a security level and set them to work.
http://www.foreignpolicy.com/articles/2012/04/18/patriot_games [foreignpolicy.com]
PATCON, for "Patriot-conspiracy" shows what can be done over years, the total mapping of many groups within the USA.
You need telco, database and local informants, long term sleepers- over many states and remote telco networks.
Enjoy the world wide wiretap, its their net and cpu power is cheaper every year :)

Altso Hitler Jugend (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40241865)

Don't know what's happening with your computer? Try asking your son...

Heil Department of Homeland Security!

Re:Altso Hitler Jugend (1)

AHuxley (892839) | more than 2 years ago | (#40242753)

Moms and dads ask - will s/he advance in a blue or white shirt?
Or keep saving and try a National Center of Academic Excellence in IA Education.

rectum as a security vehicle (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40242007)

I wunnar if they have certain employees carry devices such as microsd cards in a more creative way. See this post on Tor's Tails distribution forum page:

"can I install tails on usb then carry it in my rectum?"

"i wonder if its portable enough to install tails on usb then slide it into my anus for carrying in my rectum through long road trips and travel flights?"

https://tails.boum.org/forum/can_I_install_tails_on_usb_then_carry_it_in_my_rectum__63__/ [boum.org]

The responses are very interesting. Is such a method a more secure way of carrying these tiny storage devices?

Question: Has DHS ever NOT fubared... (1)

dsmithhfx (1772254) | more than 2 years ago | (#40242315)

...anything it set out to do?

Re:Question: Has DHS ever NOT fubared... (1)

Mashiki (184564) | more than 2 years ago | (#40242657)

No. It's actually much worse, they go out and roll in their own shit while screaming it doesn't stink.

This FP for GNAA (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40242327)

fellow traveeleRs?

The real experts on "cyber" security... (4, Insightful)

gavron (1300111) | more than 2 years ago | (#40242581)

When Bruce Schneier and Eugene Kaspersky sign on, it will be apparent that there
are true experts in the field.

Until then, the US Department of Homeland Security is nothing more than a joke.
They disrupt airline travel, train travel, and now have roving "viper" patrols to
harass motorists. They've done nothing useful in 10 years. That's right, an
entire decade of harassing travelers... with nothing to show for it.

"Well you haven't seen terrorists take over airplanes, so clearly we're effective!"
I haven't seen Santa Claus or Jesus either, so I'm guessing DHS took them out
at the same time as all the terrorists. Either that or the terrorists really used
airplanes as an attack vector 11 years ago and have now MOVED ON.

Do they know anything about "Cyber" security? If so, have they stopped using
Microsoft Windows -- the number one attack vector of computer security problems --
and moved to a secure operating system? No. Are they still using Internet
Explorer -- the most malware open browser -- to view the Internet? Yes. Are they
still sending meeting requests to each other using Outlook -- the most malware-
friendly scheduling tool -- yes.

Until DHS can demonstrate a purpose, reason for existence, an understanding of
technology in general [milimeter wave spectroscopy, let alone Windows], they are
not only the WRONG leader to follow. They are a loud obnoxious neighbor throwing
up in everyone else's back yard.

E

Re:The real experts on "cyber" security... (1)

Ryanrule (1657199) | more than 2 years ago | (#40245891)

Well, some of bushes buddies got very rich off of it.

Re:The real experts on "cyber" security... (1)

Fallon (33975) | more than 2 years ago | (#40248075)

While not Schneier or Kaspersky, Jeff Moss [wikipedia.org] did found DefCON & Black Hat. He has some real skills & experience as a security expert.

Re:The real experts on "cyber" security... (1)

elucido (870205) | more than 2 years ago | (#40257761)

While not Schneier or Kaspersky, Jeff [wikipedia.org]
Moss did found DefCON & Black Hat. He has some real skills & experience as a security expert.

If that is the standard that they are going by, that one has to be Bruce Schneier to be qualified then probably only Bruce Schneier and a handful of others in the entire world are qualified. If you look at what most of the jobs being advertised are, you don't have to be Bruce Schneier. If you look at what they expect people to know and what they ask people to do, it's digital forensics, it's policy, it's not as technical as designing encryption algorithms, it's more deciding which encryption to use and which access control policy and so on.

Based on the certifications they list as wanting the skill-set bar isn't that you have to be a professor in cryptography. It's that you need to be certified in X with Y years experience.

Some of your points are PURE "b.s." (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40255631)

"Do they know anything about "Cyber" security? If so, have they stopped using Microsoft Windows -- the number one attack vector of computer security problems -- and moved to a secure operating system? No." - by gavron (1300111) on Thursday June 07, @07:30AM (#40242581)

The ONLY reason Windows gets attacked most is it's used most: Get THAT through your head! How/Why?

Simple: Malware makers are JUST LIKE PICKPOCKETS - they go to where the MOST unsuspected & least "security-saavy" users are, & currently, that Windows (as it dominates the PC desktop + Server spaces by a HUGE margin, around 94% to what? 5% MacOS X & 1% Linux approximately??).

ANDROID, by way of comparison on smartphone computing platforms, also illustrates that VERY SAME THING:

I.E.-> When you're the most used "kingpin" on any computing platform in terms of marketshare & user "mindshare"? You're going to be "targetted for termination"... period.

The MAIN REASON MacOS X &/or Linux are not as attacked is the opposite: NOBODY USES THEM BY COMPARISON, so the "numbers" just aren't there to justify attacking them, vs. Windows... not enough "ROI" possible!

Period, & yes, that IS the "way it works", in reality...

---

" -- the number one attack vector of computer security problems --" - by gavron (1300111) on Thursday June 07, @07:30AM (#40242581)

Sorry, but the #'s are as follows:

---

1.) Maliciously scripted websites (which could affect ANY system that they're geared to attack, not just Windows, which because it's most used they're "customized" for attacking it vs. other options I noted in terms of OS used).

2.) JAVA vulnerabilities (for the same reasons as #1 - it could attack other OS just as easily IF the attack was customized for those other OS's))

3.) Flash & other Adobe products flaws (such as .pdf file scripting attacks - again, for the same reasons as #1 it could attack other OS just as easily IF the attack was customized for those other OS's)

---

* That's REALITY as to where the most threats used to attack PC users come from!

(Additionally - YES, they could be customized to ANY OS but they are not - they are geared to Operating Systems that are MOST USED, not least used, for the reasons noted above earlier here by myself (not enough return-on-investment for efforts expended on malware creation exists on Operating Systems other than Windows on PC's &/or Servers combined...).

Heck - Lastly?

Hey - no doubt ABOUT it: ANDROID proves that last part's assertion easily for me on other computing platforms, albeit in smartphones where it is "top most used" & thus, topmost attacked... Linux based as it is, or not...

APK

P.S.=> Now, can you secure a Windows NT-based OS bearing PC vs. malware? Absolutely!

http://www.google.com/search?sclient=psy-ab&hl=en&site=&source=hp&q=%22HOW+TO+SECURE+Windows+2000/XP%22&btnG=Search&gbv=1&sei=Q_DRT7H1GtTU6QGVkYWmAw [google.com]

Yes, it actually works & mostly by VERY simple principles of cutting off ANY/ALL "doors" into a PC + patching & security tweaking - but perhaps MOST IMPORTANTLY OF ALL - clueing users into WHERE the threats come from, how to stop them, & educating them...

... apk

Re:Some of your points are PURE "b.s." (1)

lister king of smeg (2481612) | more than 2 years ago | (#40258177)

android is a bad example of why Linux is insecure. First off name one drive by download virus or self executing virus for android, scrap that name one actual virus for android, there aren't any at least in the wild. what there are is malware. malware exist for all systems and is an entirely different problem than viruses, maleware must be installed by the user/admin to run. meaning you have to give it permission to run i the first place. secondly the permission system on android is fubared.

these problem don't occur in gnu/linux (as opposed to android/linux) for a number of reasons, one of whice is that you are allowed to be root and that isn' the special right of google, phone carrier, or manufacturer it is you. you can secure it and fix holes, those holes are left in the android system to make it easer for grandma to use her phone. where on gnu linux there is maleware you don't usualy see it because most apps are available via a well vetted repository system where the maintainers and users can review the source code and catch malaware ( malware writers don't want you to see the code because you might remove their crap and have a usable app and they would get caught.) there are also binary only apps in some distos repositories but those are still vetted nut not at the source level. with google apps however the is a much less stringent vetting system they are trying but there is still the issue of fubared permission that they are not willing to fix, which will perpetuate the problem.

ANDROID's a Linux, & an example proof (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40259077)

Of the concept I illustrated here of most used = most attacked on ANY computing platform -> http://it.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=2899979&cid=40255631 [slashdot.org]

(Which, from the malware maker/botnet herder's "point-of-view" MAKES TONS OF SENSE... To I.E.-> Expend more efforts where the greatest amount of returns will come from, & that is where the MOST "easy-meat noob" users are to be victimized (the most used OS platforms)).

* You can say what you wish, but it proves my point for me, easily, & with a CONCRETE undeniable example...

APK

P.S.=>

"these problem don't occur in gnu/linux (as opposed to android/linux) for a number of reasons" - by lister king of smeg (2481612) on Friday June 08, @11:51AM (#40258177)

Well, I can say (and show testimonials of it too, not just say it) the SAME about Windows NT-based OS, once "security-hardened" above the DEFAULT configuration (which I've been doing guides online for users since oh, 1997 onwards):

To "immunize" a Windows system, I effectively use the principles in "layered security" possibles!

http://www.bing.com/search?q=%22HOW+TO+SECURE+Windows+2000%2FXP%22&go=&form=QBRE [bing.com]

I.E./E.G.-> I have done so since 1997-1998 with the most viewed, highly rated guide online for Windows security there really is which came from the fact I also created the 1st guide for securing Windows, highly rated @ NEOWIN (as far back as 1998-2001) here:

http://www.neowin.net/news/apk-a-to-z-internet-speedup--security-text [neowin.net]

& from as far back as 1997 -> http://web.archive.org/web/20020205091023/www.ntcompatible.com/article1.shtml [archive.org] which Neowin above picked up on & rated very highly.

That has evolved more currently, into the MOST viewed & highly rated one there is for years now since 2008 online in the 1st URL link above...

Which has well over 500,000++ views online (actually MORE, but 1 site with 75,000 views of it went offline/out-of-business) & it's been made either:

---

1.) An Essential Guide
2.) 5-5 star rated
3.) A "sticky-pinned" thread
4.) Most viewed in the category it's in (usually security)
5.) Got me PAID by winning a contest @ PCPitStop (quite unexpectedly - I was only posting it for the good of all, & yes, "the Lord works in mysterious ways", it even got me PAID -> http://techtalk.pcpitstop.com/2007/09/04/pc-pitstop-winners/ [pcpitstop.com] (see January 2008))

---

Across 15-20 or so sites I posted it on back in 2008... & here is the IMPORTANT part, in some sample testimonials to the "layered security" methodology efficacy:

---

SOME QUOTED TESTIMONIALS TO THE EFFECTIVENESS OF SAID LAYERED SECURITY GUIDE I AUTHORED:

http://www.xtremepccentral.com/forums/showthread.php?s=672ebdf47af75a0c5b0d9e7278be305f&t=28430&page=2 [xtremepccentral.com]

"I recently, months ago when you finally got this guide done, had authorization to try this on simple work station for kids. My client, who paid me an ungodly amount of money to do this, has been PROBLEM FREE FOR MONTHS! I haven't even had a follow up call which is unusual." - THRONKA, user of my guide @ XTremePcCentral

AND

"APK, thanks for such a great guide. This would, and should, be an inspiration to such security measures. Also, the pc that has "tweaks": IS STILL GOING! NO PROBLEMS!" - THRONKA, user of my guide @ XTremePcCentral

AND

http://www.xtremepccentral.com/forums/showthread.php?s=672ebdf47af75a0c5b0d9e7278be305f&t=28430&page=3 [xtremepccentral.com]

"Its 2009 - still trouble free! I was told last week by a co worker who does active directory administration, and he said I was doing overkill. I told him yes, but I just eliminated the half life in windows that you usually get. He said good point. So from 2008 till 2009. No speed decreases, its been to a lan party, moved around in a move, and it still NEVER has had the OS reinstalled besides the fact I imaged the drive over in 2008. Great stuff! My client STILL Hasn't called me back in regards to that one machine to get it locked down for the kid. I am glad it worked and I am sure her wallet is appreciated too now that it works. Speaking of which, I need to call her to see if I can get some leads. APK - I will say it again, the guide is FANTASTIC! Its made my PC experience much easier. Sandboxing was great. Getting my host file updated, setting services to system service, rather than system local. (except AVG updater, needed system local)" - THRONKA, user of my guide @ XTremePcCentral

---

"Nuff said" as the saying goes ( AND with examples & testimonial "proofs thereof")

Incidentally?

The SAME goes for Linux, MacOS X, & other OS platforms too!

I.E. -> They do NOT ship as secured as is possible - not even SeLinux based Linux distros, & Apple puts out security guides to do the rest for MacOS X too -> http://www.apple.com/support/security/guides/ [apple.com]

(Plus, the CIS Tool I use? Runs on them ALL, & secures them via "best practices")... apk ...

Step 1 - (1)

Lumpy (12016) | more than 2 years ago | (#40242687)

Dismantle the "homeland security" department. Wipe them out as they are useless waste of money.

Step 2 - give the funds to the FBI and CIA, the people that actually have been doing this stuff for far longer and are far better at it.

Step 3 - allow the FBI to shoot any senator that tries to make yet another department for "Security" so he can help his donors businesses.

No the CIA cant shot senators, they are not supposed to work inside the USA.

This is the problem. We used to have a clean division. FBI Inside, CIA outside. that way we don't get Traitorous acts of spying on US citizens by the CIA happening in secret, like we get with the Homeland Security.

But then checks and balances get's in the way of profits and power, and we cant have that.

Re:Step 1 - (1)

a90Tj2P7 (1533853) | more than 2 years ago | (#40243187)

The whole point of DHS was to make and maintain a clean division of roles. The TSA's only part of that, things like FEMA and the secret service have been moved under that umbrella as well. The FBI is supposed to be the national-level police force, they shouldn't be getting involved in industry regulation and policy.

Re:Step 1 - (1)

lister king of smeg (2481612) | more than 2 years ago | (#40258201)

i though that the US marshals were the nation police force

Re:Step 1 - (1)

a90Tj2P7 (1533853) | more than 2 years ago | (#40258645)

Oversimplifying a bit, the FBI handles the investigation and prosecution of federal criminal offenses, the marshal service provides security for the federal court system (personnel, buildings, endangered witnesses) and hunts down fugitives. They're more or less national-level court officers.

Citizen! (1)

alexmin (938677) | more than 2 years ago | (#40242707)

Open your wallet even wider!

Rules for new hires .... (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40242729)

Rules for new hires ....

I used to work on government contracts where clearance was required and have applied for contract jobs recently. The old guard boss is still there and he is more clueless than ever.

During the interview, it was clear:
* Nobody interviewing me was qualified to do that from a technical perspective. They were smart, just not smart about anything related to computers, networking, ....
* My skill set addressed 3 of their open positions. I'm serious.
* My rate was pretty low, yet the 3 guys kept talking about how expensive I was.
* The clearance from my prior job was 5.1 yrs old - WITH THE SAME COMPANY, just at a different place. The interviewer/manager couldn't be bothered to look up the name of the security officer at the other location.
* After I was deemed to be a perfect fit - aircraft, networking, languages, sys admin - the boss decided to list all the mandatory aspects of the job.
** be on time. Start time for my job was 7am at the latest. I'm serious. 7am **everyday**, regardless of what was happening that day. I understand that 4am was commonly needed - that was the nature of this specific job. Testing new aircraft is an early morning thing.
** Never talk back. He actually said that.
** Lunch was 30 minutes. Ok, this was getting funny.
** No leaving work early - PERIOD. Not even for Dr appointments. If I needed to pick up a sick kid early from school, I could be fired.

This boss seemed to have been from the 50s. I think he worked on an aircraft assembly line, not with "professionals" and he definitely didn't have a clue about IT people.

A week later, I followed up with the interviewer (mainly to be polite) to see where I stood. He hadn't done anything. I'd already decided to take a different position, for a 30% higher rate, which I know now is still cheap. 3 weeks later, he called me back and seemed shocked that I was working somewhere else.

Government hiring managers are clueless. They don't understand the competitive nature of the world and that people have other opportunities - some much more interesting for much more pay without all the hassles from old-style bosses.

I don't want to say that all government bosses are like this, I've worked on other contracts where I was treated with respect, paid fairly, had a great boss - we worked long and hard doing great things for the government - it was good.

I remember going to a recruitment meeting at my college for some 3-letter agencies. After all the hype in the first 10 minutes, they said that if you'd ever used any drugs, including pot, you would not be hired. 50% of the room got up and walked out. I think the other 50% were 80% liars. Personally, I don't want people who have never inhaled making decisions about my life and definitely don't want someone so straight to represent the USA abroad.

Anyway, to be happier at a new job, you'll want to
* get the pay scale early in the process
* get any "work rules" understood
* find out if your actual boss is a prick

Sounds Great (1)

Curunir_wolf (588405) | more than 2 years ago | (#40243209)

Yea, that's not frightening. Not at all.

DHS to Build Cyber Workforce... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40243289)

...by throwing a bunch of money at SANS. With Mr. Paller's presence on this "task force," I'm guessing this plan will include a contract with SANS for training. DHS will pump a bunch of unqualified and incapable people through the courses so they can show how many certifications they can get. Most will fail the tests, but DHS will cite the training as a success in building Ms. Napolitano's "world-class cybersecurity team - a strong, dependable pipeline for the future."

Its a TRAP! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40244375)

Ackbar aside, the universities should realize the intent of this program to allow DHS access to university records and data for "security checks"; the data turning-out to be added to DHS all-encompassing databases.

Wrong Move (1)

DaKong (150846) | more than 2 years ago | (#40244551)

The best thing to do for national security is to immediately de-fund and dissolve the Department of Homeland Security. WTF is a "Homeland" anyway? Is that like a "Fatherland" or "Motherland?" As an American, as one whose ancestors signed the Declaration of Independence and also who got here long, long before, I am deeply offended by and opposed to calling this country anything but "The Land of the Free, and the Home of the Brave."

DHS, and their child agency, TSA, need to clear out their desks immediately and to not let the door hit them on the ass on the way out. They must be not only barred from ever working in government again, but to be stripped of their citizenship and exiled to North Korea, Cuba, or some other sufficiently totalitarian state more predisposed to their dysfunction.

The 30 year Job (1)

braindrainbahrain (874202) | more than 2 years ago | (#40246211)

Cybersecurity has got to be a great job! Why just the other day I submitted a story about how a fellow from the State Department said the cybersecurity "would most assure 30 years of steady, well-paying employment [washingtonpost.com] ".

  What do you say cyber dudes (and dudettes) out there? Are recruiters calling you? Are you getting retention or sign-on bonuses? Is the grass really that green over there?

We've already done this (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40246851)

In April my university's Information Security club held a cyber defense competition geared for high school students. This was funded in full by the government (NSA or the DOD, I don't remember specifically which). Their motive behind it was to get the students interested in info sec so that they'll hopefully have these kids in the workforce later on. It was a lot of fun and our club made up the white and red team. We had a great time and so did the students so I guess it was a success.

Then what? (1)

elucido (870205) | more than 2 years ago | (#40257491)

They never outline a clear path from University to a job in Cyber Security. All the Cyber Security jobs they talk about expect years of experience, a security clearance, and social connections. Most people will be lucky to have just one of those qualifications.

As far as skills go they can take any college student off the street. As far as experience goes they can find some people who have skills and experience. When they want skills, experience and a security clearance then their list is drastically smaller. When they want all of this and want to pay chump change, then they run into problems.

If their goal is to build a cyber workforce, in my opinion the answer is paid internships. If they offer 10,000 paid internships a year they'll have a skilled workforce in no time. If they want to save money they could even get away with offering it unpaid and in this economy people would still take it.

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