Author Archives: ryan

About ryan

I am the VP of Marketing for TrainACE and our Cyber Security training division, Advanced Security.

Free CEH Exam Study Guide Now Available

For people looking to take the easier route in accomplishing the Certified Ethical Hacker (CEH) certification, there is a free study guide available online. You can download the free CEH exam prep study guide here: CEH Exam Study Guide

FireEye & TrainACE Teaming Up For Free Hacker’s Breakfast Seminar

That’s right; learn more about Advanced Persistent Threat for FREE!

Enjoy 4 hours packed with lectures/labs/and Q & A (and breakfast of course!). FireEye, the malware protection guru, has a lot to say about catching malware and they are ready to come clean about what they know. Alex Lanstein will be speaking at the seminar, complete with a demo on how FireEye catches major Java zero day threats.

Right after Alex, Timber Wolfe, a SME from TrainACE, will be speaking on Honey Nets, Honey Pots, and Honey Farms. This is a fast growing science and Timber is one of the best of the best when it comes to Honeynetting!

This live event is being held in Greenbelt, MD at the Hilton Garden Inn. The facility is conveniently located right next to TrainACE’s headquarters on Walker Drive. Breakfast will be served at 8:15am then then will transition right into the seminar. There’s going to be time for networking at the end, but things will wrap up at 12:30pm.

For more details and to register for this free Hacker’s Breakfast, visit here:

Why Security Professionals Need to Know Python

As more IT security professionals use programming as an essential tool, Python has emerged as the language of choice as is found in the emergence of open enrollment training classes such as the one at Advanced Security. Python offers advantages in ease, rapid development, and support that provide the flexibility and speed critical to security activities.

Python’s Rise Above the Language Jungle
Python is a high-level, object-oriented programming language that is scalable and extensible. Security professionals can easily learn it and write custom applications, tools, and automation scripts. Hackers are increasingly using Python because it offers extensive libraries and can be coded quickly. The language’s modular design and clean syntax also make it easy to modify existing code or add on to canned tools. In the security community, more applications continue to be written in Python. An organization can save development time by using Python to create reusable code that stands on its own.

Python is cross-platform and portable to most operating systems including Linux, Windows and Mac. Versions also exist for .NET and the Java virtual machine. As a compiled language, it can run as a script or executable. Python’s clear structure and built-in support make it easy for security experts from any programming background to learn and use.

Rapid Application Development With Python
Security professionals need to write and modify applications quickly in order to test, add new features, and stop threats. Intended for rapid application development, Python has an edge over several other languages in its simplicity and readability. It uses a straightforward object-oriented implementation with clean syntax to promote code standardization. It also has automatic memory management and exception handling, features which speed up development time for security experts who need to focus on results rather than low-level operations. Python’s structure supports easy maintenance so that scripts live as extensible business tools independent of their original authors. Security experts tackling programming or Python for the first time can become productive within days. There is even a search engine for Python source code, called Nullege, that lets developers find code examples to work with.

Test tools often lag behind real-life requirements, and security professionals have to move beyond canned solutions in order to achieve full coverage. Hackers and Web application testers often create custom scripts on the fly and need the functionality that Python’s modules and rapid prototyping provide. Using Python, they can quickly deploy crucial offensive measures such as password cracking, SQL injection, packet captures, and back doors. Security systems administrators can easily create scripts to parse log files, scan ports, analyze memory usage, and handle other common tasks.

Strong Python Developer Support
Python comes with a huge library of extensible modules that provide most functions a security professional needs. As Web applications and technologies are a central security concern, Web support is essential for coding. The Python standard library includes specific modules for building clients and working with Web functions. It also has data parsing modules that handle XML and HTML among other syntaxes. Further, substantial third-party solutions exist in the form of Web frameworks and support for binary protocols as well as other tools. Developers can also leverage Python’s active user community and variety of reference resources.

Python is a lean workhorse that gives hackers and other security professionals the tools to quickly develop applications. While it may not be the most elegant of languages, Python’s clean and flexible structure puts power where it is needed most.

Examining the Distinguishing Factors of Cyber Security versus IT Security

Little do people realize but Cyber Security is actually quite different from the more generic term, “IT Security”.

The National Security Agency (NSA) uses two terms to define cyber security. Information assurance is a measure that protects and defends the integrity, availability and confidentiality of information and information systems. Information systems security protects information systems from unauthorized access and prevents unauthorized changes or modifications to information that is stored, moved or processed. Businesses, Department of Defense and other governmental agencies require cyber security measures that will ensure that confidential information remains intact without interference from unauthorized sources. ISO/IEC 27032 defines cyberspace security as the preservation of confidential information in cyberspace. Cyberspace is defined as the interaction of people, software and services on the Internet.

The word cyber began as an ancient Greek word that meant either a pilot, rudder operator or other person guiding a boat. In ancient Greece, the word developed into a term referring to central governmental control. In the twentieth century, Norbert Wiener employed the word cybernetics from the ancient Greek word cyber to describe robots with brains that control mechanisms. William Gibson wanted to use a word in his science fiction novels about the electronic future to refer to the place where online interactions occurred. Gibson’s 1984 novel “Neuromancer” popularized the term cyberspace from the word cyber that Weiner had used earlier in the century.

Some early Internet users were avid readers of Gibson’s science fiction novels. They adopted the term cyberspace as an alternate term for using the Internet. Meanwhile, federal government security professionals adopted information security or infosec as another term for information systems security. The military added another interpretation to the terminology adopted by civilian government professionals. Military mindset encompassed the thought processes of defending the terrain known as cyberspace. The military adopted the term cyber security and later shortened the term to cyber.

Cyber security revolves around the three core areas of confidentiality, integrity and authentication. Confidentiality protects information from unauthorized access by others. Integrity prevents information from alteration by unauthorized users. Authentication is the process of recognizing the identity of information users. There are two other terms associated with cyber security. Non-repudiation means that each person sending a message must be identified as the original message sender. Availability refers to an information system that is operational and functional at any time. Cyber security relies upon preventative measures used to protect information from attacks. Cyber security strategies include identity, incident and risk management to study and resolve potential viruses, malicious code and other information threatening issues.

Three cyber security strategies are prevalent in today’s cyber security environment that will lead to cyber security success. First, building a preventive defense system based upon the needed security level of an organization is essential to combating intrusions and cyber security attacks. Second, resilience or the ability to withstand attacks and failures is necessary as a preventive measure against the intrusions that will happen in cyberspace. Third, an offensive mindset will locate vulnerabilities in an organization’s defense system. A credible cyber defense should also include offensive capabilities to build a deterrence system that will prevent intruders from launching a cyber attack against an organization.

The cyber security industry moved from a defensive to offensive strategy of attack after security professionals examined cyber security from a preventive perspective and technological solutions to the problem emerged. An Intrusion Prevention System (IPS) (eg. Snort) was developed to provide security professionals with a proactive capability. Another offensive strategy uses counter terror techniques to find hacker cells, infiltrate and physically limit these hacker attacks.

Cyber security training differs quite a bit from traditional IT security training as well. True cyber security training (see TrainACE’s Advanced Security Cyber Security Training) classes include offensive skill sets like hacking mobile devices, exploit creation and python scripting your own tools to expose vulnerabilities. Traditional IT security classes include certifications like the Security+ and the CISSP, which are designed for defense, only.

Funny Video by EC-Council Award Winning Training Company

We came across this video from our friends at TrainACE. Its pretty funny. The Office Space and Office references are blatant and subliminal messages are amusing as well:

How Computer Forensics Training Complements A Hacking Career

Hackers who have gone good form an essential part of any large business or organization’s IT team. Hackers who are employed on the behalf of a business can identify security threats and put security measures in place that protect the data of a company and its consumers. Professionals hackers who have gone good have been key in identifying and eliminating security threats that affect major businesses and government bodies. In fact, such hackers can earn the Certified Ethical Hacker (CEH) certification to demonstrate to potential employers that they intend to use their hacking skills for good.

Completing training in computer forensics can round-out the skill set of any hacker. This special training helps individuals as they strive to identify information or evidence left behind on computers after crimes or hacker attacks. While many law enforcement agencies employ computer forensics professionals, few major businesses are able to do so on a regular basis. Such businesses stand to benefit significantly from hiring CEHs with advanced computer forensics training.

While on the job, the majority of hackers employed by businesses and government bodies are responsible for identifying incoming attacks by hackers and stopping those attacks. In order to do so, CEHs must use the same tools and knowledge that bad hackers use to infiltrate and corrupt systems. When a CEH can work on a network at the same time that a hacker is attempting to violate that network, he or she can gain valuable information about a hacker’s skills, tools and likelihood of success. A CEH is also able to track the path of a hacker’s attack when he or she can observe the hacker in action.

However, many computer security threats occur when CEHs and other IT professionals are off the clock. This means that corporate and government computer systems might be prone to particularly vicious attacks after hours. This is especially true when hackers are attempting to plant a virus or other encrypted information on a company’s servers. Such off-hours attacks are also prevalent when an employee of the organization is attempting to hack the system for the purposes of embezzlement or other personal gain.

After a hacking incident has taken place, CEHs can trace the basic route of the hacker in an attempt to understand how the system was compromised and what security measures should be put into place. However, even the best corporate hackers are often unable to determine other information about the hacker. What evidence did they leave behind when they infiltrated a system? If they deleted or moved crucial business files, what happened to those files? CEHs must also be able to trace viruses or encrypted packets of unwanted information that hackers leave behind.

Computer forensics training provides professional hackers with the skills that they need in order to trace and better understand threats. Such training makes it possible for hackers to seek out and identify systems changes made by hackers. Using forensic techniques, hackers are also able to locate unwanted information placed on a company’s network. They can find hidden scripts and viruses that hackers leave behind in an attempt to sabotage an organization’s network.

Certified Ethical Hackers who complete computer forensics training can also be invaluable in identifying computer crimes committed by an organization’s own employees. They may be able to locate information about embezzlement or find files that employees have attempted to hide on company systems. They can even recover damaging documents that employees believe they have deleted. Computer forensics training is an excellent complement to the career of any professional hacker. With this important training under his or her belt, a hacker will have a wealth of skills that help ensure the security and stability of any organization’s network.

This Post Sponsored By: The CHFI Class at Hacker Halted 2012 – Get Info Now!!

Why the CompTIA Security+ is a Great Course to Take Online

With the world in an age of technology and fast advancing at that, security threats in systems and networks are a rising concern. In order to protect corporations from damages involving breaches in security and data loss, personnel must be well-versed in methods and tools used to protect data and systems. Toward that end, CompTIA Security+ is a certification course which demonstrates the ability and knowledge of individuals in regards to procedures used to guard against security risks, as well as their capabilities to handle security incidents should they occur.

Since the course is theory-based, the required classes can be taken online instead of needing a standard classroom setting. Online classes have several advantages over physical classrooms and are becoming an increasingly common alternative for many.

With an online class, the course can be made to fit any schedule since there is no specific required time which must be devoted to classes. Due to this, any kind of work schedule, which would often conflict with school times, will allow online lessons as an option. For many people, their work schedule directly conflicts with common school times or is quite variable, making normal lessons—with fixed times—very difficult. This is all the more so since not all jobs will offer flexibility in their schedules for other activities, even if they are a responsible course of action. For the working parent, further adaptability is required still.

Having freedom to select what times to use toward lessons and studying allows each person to reserve time for lessons when available and convenient. By choosing the specific time, one can make sure that distractions are minimal and attention is at its best; this makes the time spent more effective and ensures a better understanding of the subject matter.

Not all courses are equally well-suited to online classes. Any classes that benefit from hands-on experience and direct guidance from an instructor will be better suited to a standard classroom. However, this kind of certification is almost completely theory, meaning that there is nothing lost in taking the courses online as opposed to attending a physical classroom. Not only is the course itself theory-based, the exam which certifies that you have passed the course satisfactorily is largely vocabulary. Consisting in large part of vocabulary means that studying for the exam can be very well accomplished anywhere and that the knowledge can be obtained from a written or online source just as well as from an actual instructor.

In our fast-moving world, being able to attend classes at any time and from the comfort of your home is a great convenience. The CompTIA Security+ certification course is an excellent choice for an online course, tailored to your individual schedule and needs.

Get information on an online / CBT Security+ class:


Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.