You guessed it! It’s been too long since our last employee spotlight on Sales Engineer, Helen Johnson, our resident sewing enthusiast and supporter of furry friends. Next up, I’m very pleased to formally introduce you to DomainTools Senior Security Engineer, Tarik Saleh. I say “formally introduce”, because you have likely stumbled across the many webinars, blogs, and other pieces Tarik has participated in and created this past year. It brings me a great deal of joy to present one of our resident security gurus, the great, Tarik Saleh.
Computer Museum in Berlin
There are dozens and dozens of articles and research on the infosecurity skills gap, so I always find it particularly interesting to explore the oftentimes non-linear journey into the security space. From what I hear, the person we have to thank for Tarik’s initial interest in tech is his mom. One day whilst Tarik was in the second grade, his mom purchased him a computer, and just like that, Tarik was hooked. At first, he walked through the exercise of installing critical video card upgrades so he could play DOOM. From there on out, there was a snowball effect for Tarik and his technological interests including understanding how computers work, connect to BBS boards, etc. Tarik’s educational background doesn’t fit the cookie cutter computer science degree, but instead, an innate curiosity and thirst for knowledge which has served him well. His first gig in IT was an entry level Sysadmin/network engineer at the Department of Defense Madigan Hospital (not bad eh?).
Tarik continued hacking on the side and figuring out how malware works in his own time. Eventually, he transitioned to a job at Woodstone Credit Union as a Sysadmin, where he was able to beef up his technical chops. Next up, a networking engineering job at Starbucks followed by a life changing moment when he was cold called by a recruiter from Amazon asking if he wanted to be in their security operations center. Finally, I’m selfishly very happy to report that after his time at Amazon, and then later at Expedia, Tarik found his way to DomainTools. Something that stands out to me is Tarik’s perspective on his journey which is this: there is no singular path to success in security. So, to all of those feeling they don’t fit the mold of what people sometimes refer to as “a typical security career progression”, I hope you find Tarik’s story inspiring.
But enough work talk! Tarik is a man of many talents and passions. For example, Tarik is fascinated by 80’s movies, the cheesier, the better. In fact, Tarik and his friends have movie nights paired with themed drinks every few weeks (for example, Escaped from New York paired with Manhattans). In addition to his love for 80’s flicks, Tarik is big into traveling, a gear head (perhaps what piqued his interest in DomainTools?), tattoo art, and a sneakerhead(he seriously has the coolest kicks). Although Tarik’s love runs deep for his above interests, there is no love greater than that for his pup, Roland. But I mean, can you blame him? Look at that cute little face!
It goes without saying that we all feel very lucky to have Tarik on the DomainTools team, and to have him protecting us all from the scarier parts of the interwebs. Personally, I look forward to continuing to work hard with Tarik to produce some excellent content, so keep an eye out for his webinars, podcasts, and blogs. I’m looking forward to sharing more fun DomainTools stories in our next Employee Spotlight segment. Until then, if you are Interested in joining our team, check our job listings or enjoy this fantastic video about life at DomainTools.