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Shutterstock: Michal Chmurski
Shutterstock: Michal Chmurski

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A glimpse into life at NCC through the eyes of a work experience student

This year we have seen several A-Level students join us for 1-2 weeks, in our Manchester, Leatherhead and Cheltenham offices. Work experience is a brilliant opportunity for students to experience ‘a day in the life’ of an NCC Group colleague.

Oskar, a current A Level student joined our Technical Security Consulting division for one week earlier this year, shadowing our Security Consultants/Penetration Testers. Here’s what he had to say about his time with us.

What interests you about cyber security?

I am currently studying computer science A-Level at a sixth form college. I have been developing an interest for cyber security since reading an article detailing “Red-Teaming”. Learning about the elite penetration testers caught my attention. As a result, penetration testing became my aspired career path. Following this, I applied for and completed the CyberFirst Defenders course in 2017, and recently have been accepted onto the CyberFirst Advanced course this summer. I have been extending my knowledge as far as possible by completing CTFs / Boxes and exploring several security-based Linux operating systems.

What have you enjoyed most about your work experience placement?

Being able to explore the practical side of cyber security through NCC Group’s controlled lab environments.

What have you learnt during your time with us?

How to utilise new tools and equipment (Such as SQLmap, NBTscan and SMBclient) as well as learning about how a cyber security firm would work as a business with different departments.

Why are you passionate about cyber security? What do you love most about the industry?

I have always had an interest in figuring out how machines work on the inside; cyber security is the art of making a machine or program complete tasks it should not, usually beneficial to the attacker. I would like to prevent the wrong people from being able to do such things, as the consequences can be catastrophic.

How do you think the work experience will help you with your career?

I believe having the actual experience of working in a lab environment has given me an insight into how cyber security is handled on a professional level. In my opinion, this is a hard view to gain without direct interaction with industry professionals.

What’s next, what plans do you have for after the placement?

When I finish my A-Levels, I plan to apply for some degree-level cyber security apprenticeships to gain more professional, practical experience and learn even more about penetration testing and the cyber security industry. My future career aspirations are to pursue penetration testing and evolve with technology as it changes.

If like Oskar you are considering a career in cyber security, a work experience placement in this field can be invaluable. It’s not only a chance for you to improve your technical capability, but also an opportunity to learn about a cyber-security as a business, and what it takes to be a Security Consultant.

If you would like to be considered for a work experience placement at NCC Group, get in touch with our careers team. We can offer at various times in the year in our Manchester, Cheltenham or Leatherhead offices.

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