The past two weeks have been packed with activity. First, one of my sister’s dogs (Molly) became seriously ill, and we did not know whether she would survive. That was quite difficult because she is a very sweet dog who makes friends with just about anyone she meets. She received some surgery, and the vet discovered that she had swallowed some rope. She then came home the next night.
My sister has kept Molly upstairs with her while she recovers from surgery, and I continue caring for the other dog Jenny. Molly is recovering well, but she cannot do everything the wants. She cannot run and play until her incision has healed. I feel bad for her, but this period will pass. When the vet approves, she will be allowed to return to her normal active life.
I am also quite busy at school. One friend at school invited me to join an ethical hacking tutorial group. Ethical hacking, also called penetration testing, is a part of cybersecurity. A company can hire penetration testers to find weaknesses in their security. This can involve actually hacking into their system (legally and without causing any harm) for the purpose of finding the weaknesses so that they can be fixed before a malicious hacker finds them. It can also include more mundane tasks like checking for cubicles where someone has posted a password on a sticky note (a big no no, by the way). Whatever the specific tasks may be, their goal is to strengthen the client’s security.
I am still learning some of the fundamentals I will need before I can do much with penetration testing (such as networking, virtual machines, etc). Nonetheless, this is a good opportunity to learn and to meet fellow students, and so I will participate whenever I can, Later in my program I will take an entire class on penetration testing, but for now I will enjoy learning from the tutorials.
I was doing extra reading to prepare to take the Network+ exam this summer with the plan to take the Security+ exam later in the summer or in the Spring, but that has changed. My information security instructor told us about two weeks ago that if we take the Security+ exam and pass it, then we do not need to take the final exam in class. I am now devoting extra time to getting ahead in my security class so that I can take the Security+ exam in time. I will then study for the Network+ exam.
I have also changed my plans for the summer semester. I had planned to take two classes. The summer semester is short, and so two classes will have the weekly workload of four classes. It would be difficult to work a job now with only three classes. A job would be impossible with two classes, and so I think I might take only one class in the summer and also work an internship. It may delay my graduation, but the experience I would gain in the field would be well worth it.