Our roving reporter aka TechVets Training Specialist Rachael Bailey heads to Lancaster University for BSides Lancashire. It’s an event organised by volunteers and is focused on sharing knowledge and expertise in the field of cybersecurity.
TechVets Training Specialist Rachael Bailey:
BSides Lancashire was a phenomenal event, with around 300 people in attendance, all keen to share knowledge or learn more about cybersecurity opportunities. Most of the talks covered AI and how it affects the cyber community, a fascinating subject as industry grapples with the evolution of AI software such as Bard and ChatGPT.
Many people wonder if AI will replace cyber professionals and this prompted lots of in-depth discussions around how AI can be embraced to support cyber professionals rather than replace them.
The discussions gave me a better understanding of how people in cybersecurity already use automation within their day-to-day jobs. How using new tools such as ChatGPT can assist them with their jobs without removing the need for humans in the process. I can pass on this knowledge to the TechVets community who were not able to attend, and I can help to promote the message that AI is not a threat, but another tool.
One highlight of the event for me, was the opportunity to catch up with Dan and Kerry Cannon from North Green Security. North Green Security is a fantastic company that provides high quality training to TechVets for free. This training is perfect for any aspiring Penetration Testers that want to take the Cyber Scheme Team Member exam. I have attended this course and learnt an incredible amount of knowledge.
This was the first event for the BSides team in Lancashire and it was a huge success. Historically, people have to travel to Manchester, Birmingham, London or further afield to access cybersecurity initiatives of this scale so it’s fantastic to see opportunities opening up across the UK to give even more people an insight into tech careers.
These events are great for networking and for meeting people working in the cyber industry. Some of them do the jobs you want to do and can advise you of how best to achieve this. By attending events local to yourself it provides a unique ability to meet people you could one day want to work for. I had some great advice about putting yourself in front of the hiring person for the job you want, events like this could be the opportunity to put yourself in front of people that could want to hire you now or in the future.
To top off a great event, BSides Lancashire raised nearly £7000 for their five chosen charities including TechVets, NSPCC, Young Minds, The Trussell Trust and Papyrus.