The InfoSec Interviews > @Fox0x01

Photo by Anas Alshanti on Unsplash

Azeria has been hugely influential in my career. As a software engineer, before transitioning to a role in security, her presence on Twitter provided me with so many fantastic resources for beginning my informal infosec education. She also acted as a role model for the kind of work I dreamed of someday being involved with. Today she remains a constant source of expertise, and her website Azeria-Labs has been invaluable as I re-learn all of the assembly I’d forgotten from university.

> What’s your name/pseudonym?
Azeria

> Where are you from/currently living?
Traveling around Europe :)

> What infosec role are you in, currently?
Security Researcher and Reverse Engineer

> Have you ever worked in any other infosec or computer-related role?
Penetration Tester and Threat Researcher

> Did you pursue a post-secondary degree/diploma? If so, did you focus on something computer-related or specifically security?
Yes, I studied Information Systems Security for my bachelors and picked Enterprise Security with focus on Software Security for my masters.

> How did you become interested in working in security?
I heard about infoSec as a career path and it sounded super interesting, so I found ways to pursue this career path.

> How did you land your first job in the industry?
As a bachelors student, I was disappointed that the things you learn at university aren’t necessarily practical for becoming a security professional. The role of a Penetration Tester (or ethical hacker) fascinated me and I was eager to explore this field, but didn’t know where to start. I looked for companies that hire Junior level Pentesters and applied. The interview consisted of a technical 1-hour call and a hacking challenge where the candidate is asked to find vulnerabilities in a specific web application. Three weeks before the interview I started to learn about the most common web vulnerabilities, practiced on vulnerable labs and tried to acquire as much knowledge as possible. I nailed the interview and started working full-time in Vienna and then continued part-time to finish my bachelors degree.

> Was there anything, in particular, that you really struggled with?
I think we all struggle with the question “how do I find the time to learn all the things I want to learn”. We all have only 24 hours in a day, and everyone has their own responsibilities. The challenge is to set the right priorities and to make the decision to focus on things that align with your goals. I became good at setting goals and actively working towards them, but I still struggle with deciding *against* something I’d like to do but know that it hasn’t the highest priority.

> Do you have any favourite resources that helped you in your chosen infosec field?
Being on Twitter helped me to find the right people and resources by following people who I, and others, consider experts in their area. It’s extremely valuable to know the people who could potentially answer questions you have or share their knowledge in a way that you can learn from. When I started attending conferences, I had the chance to meet these talented researchers in person, which was very inspiring and encouraging especially in the beginning. In terms of books, that’s very subjective because everyone has their own area of interest and should decide what books to read based on what gaps they have rather than reading what others have read. What helped me in terms of book selection was to set a goal and write down the gaps I need to fill in order to achieve it. Then, I’d start gathering material from various sources and decide on the most promising ones.

You can find Azeria online at Twitter: @Fox0x01, and on her website Azeria-Labs which also has a dedicated Twitter account, @azeria_labs.