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2020 in Retrospection

I took some training

Having recently switched job and the mandate of Working from Home (WFH), I had a lot of time in my hands. I decided to take advantage of the situation by taking training as needed. My current employer provides all its employee Udemy for Business account. We can take any course available in Udemy at no-cost to us. It has been a tool of immense value because it provides mastery level training in many areas of IT that I may not be too familiar with. These are the best training I took this year from Udemy.

  • CISSP Certification Training by Thor Pedersen
    Thor divides the training in 4 courses: Domain 1-2, Domain 3-4, Domain 5-6, and Domain 7-8. He does an excellent job discussing all the concepts and putting additional emphasis on important ones.
  • Linux Privilege Escalation for OSCP & Beyond! by Tib3rius 
    This course came heavily recommended by many professionals in the infosec/offensive security community. Tib3rius goes over many techniques for obtaining admin/root access on systems, which is my weakest area when doing HackTheBox or other similar challenges.
  • Windows Privilege Escalation for OSCP & Beyond! by Tib3rius 
    Same as above.
  • Writing With Confidence: Writing Beginner To Writing Pro by Clare Lynch
    The best none IT related course I took this year. Clare provides great insights into business writing. During the lessons, I was able to identify mistakes and bad habits I commit often that prevents me from getting my point across to the audience. The final chapters are targeted towards professional writers, I skipped most of them.
  • Certified Kubernetes Administrator (CKA) with Practice Tests by Mumshad Mannambeth
    Recommended by a coworker. I had to become proficient using Kubernetes in a matter of weeks. This training was able to provide me with everything I needed: the basics concepts to how it works internally. I was able to work my way through most tasks by referring back to the video.
  • Linux Administration Bootcamp: Go from Beginner to Advanced by Jason Cannon
    I was planning to take RHCSA certification test when I decided to enroll in this course. I was already proficient with Linux before taking this course, I took the course as a refresher to RHEL 8 and its new features. Overall, Jason Cannon did an excellent job at explaining the concepts in a way that anyone could follow along.

I made some life changes

By end of 2019, I realized that I needed to switch jobs to further grow professionally. It was not easy leaving behind the amazing colleagues, the exciting work, and the great work-life balance at US Cyber Command.

During the initial phases of pandemic, I was offered a position with great opportunities of advancements at Forcepoint. I accepted the position amidst the uncertainty of the economy and job security. So far, it is paying off. Within one year, my manager was able to offer me a new opportunity within the company at a closer location to home with better responsibilities. So far so good! Thanks, Rich!

2021 To-do list

This year I would like to earn my first bounty from HackerOne. I have always played with the idea of getting into Offensive Security. My plan is to do more runs on HackTheBox and complete Burp Suite training.

And since my company will subsidize certifications that are work-related, I will be going for RHCSA and RHCE. Let’s see how it goes!

Thanks for reading!

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