Name: Todd A. Painter
Title: Network Engineer
Employer: UNG, Inc.
Location: Boiling Springs, SC (USA)
Years in IT: 7
Years in information security: 3
Cybersecurity certifications: SSCP, Security+, working on CISSP
How did you decide upon a career in cybersecurity?
Looking at the current scope of IT, it was apparent to me that the IT security field would have the largest growth in the coming years. With that in mind, I knew that I had a good chance at becoming a valuable asset to any company that needed a security expert, or someone with more of a security mindset rather than just desktop or network support.
Why did you get your SSCP®?
I studied and attained my SSCP for two reasons. The first reason is that it reduces the amount of paid experience by one year I need to have to attain my CISSP. The second reason was to see if I could pass the exam. Some people said it’s harder than other comparable security certifications. I personally found it to be more detailed than the other security credential I currently hold.
What is a typical day like for you?
I work for a Managed Service Provider (MSP), so my days are far from typical. For those that don’t know, an MSP is the IT department for medium sized businesses. We have about 40 clients, and all of them have different IT needs in general. The only consistencies in my day are daily backup reviews, OpenDNS log reviews, and A/V log reviews. I also oversee all of our clients’ firewalls, which includes configuration and management.
Can you tell us about a personal career highlight?
The biggest highlight of my career thus far was to get the following certifications in a relatively short amount of time. Within 12 months I attained A+, Network+, Security+, SSCP, and a few other vendor specific certifications. Being able to attain all of these certifications showcases my ability to learn and apply the skills in real time environments.
How has the SSCP certification helped you in your career?
Since being awarded my SSCP, it has helped set me apart from co-workers, and I am now one of the top candidates to be promoted to CTO with my current employer, along with my other credentials and years of experience of course.
What is the most useful advice you have for other information security professionals?
Learn, learn, and learn some more! The infosec field is extremely dynamic and will remain so for many years. This is especially so as more and more of us integrate technology into our lives. It’s up to us in the infosec field to protect these people and their sensitive data. Best of luck to all of those working to make themselves and the infosec field better each day.
For more information on the Systems Security Certified Practitioner certification, download our Ultimate Guide to the SSCP.