image of breaking badness
Breaking Badness
Breaking Badness

Voices from Infosec with Kat Sweet

Here is a Brief Outline of our Discussion with Kat

Speaking to Kat during a rather tumultuous time was a breath of fresh air. Although we are all dealing with the anxiety and reality of the current Coronavirus pandemic, it was comforting to hear Kat’s energizing perspective. Our discussion kicked off with Kat’s passions and a conversation highlighting what gives her the energy to be so involved and immersed in infosecurity. This segued nicely into helpful advice for security professionals at any point in their career. Kat underlines the importance of discovery when starting a new role. In particular, taking a few months to learn more than just what technologies the organization uses, but also how data flows between different systems in your infrastructure. And even more importantly, how information is passed among colleagues.

Another topic of discussion is formulas to success (or sec-sess) in security. Kat’s experience has taught her that success is usually a result of a combination of; being at the right place at the right time, having managers and mentors who are advocating for you and providing resources, hard work, and networking with other infosecurity professionals.

Finally, a theme emerged while speaking with Kat: the value of gathering a wide variety of information from a diverse range of people. Whether that be folks with different educational backgrounds, experiences, or roles, this is vital in our industry. As an example, we need to ensure we don’t exist in silos. Kat pointed out the importance of seeing the entire process for security analysts. Which not only allows for more collaborative teams, but more opportunities for blue teammers. In a similar vein, Kat shared her thoughts on how to make infosecurity a more inclusive, diverse, and equitable place for all. Kat emphasizes that this must start with leadership investing in inclusive environments. Additionally, we all need to be conscious of the language we use. And finally, we should cultivate a culture where we can openly talk about intent vs. impact, and be willing to hear and accept feedback. We also need to be able to change behavior accordingly.

It was a pleasure to speak with Kat, be sure to listen to the full interview for some levity. You’ll also learn what spoons and security have in common, conspiracy theories involving Hackers and Mean Girls, and most importantly, key advice for submitting and presenting CFPs.

Resources Mentioned In This Episode

Art into Science Event

Detections Podcast: SOC Puppets Episode

No More Tiers: Reimagining the Structure of SecOps

The Building Blocks of Infosec CFPs

The Responsible Communication Style Guide

The Uncommon Journey

We the People: Democratizing Security

That’s about all we have for this week, you can find us on Twitter @domaintools, all of the articles mentioned in our podcast will always be included on our podcast recap. Catch us Wednesdays at 9 AM Pacific time when we publish our next podcast and blog.

*A special thanks to John Roderick for our incredible podcast music!