I am an aspiring information security professional. I have asked various professionals in the community for advice and one common theme in responses to my inquiries is "Get to know the community!" They advised me to join my local chapter of one of the following organizations:

Of course I want to join and participate in all three organization, however there is the reality of time constraints and membership fees.

All three have a local chapter in my area, offer monthly meetings and various other perks. My main concern is the greatest amount of exposure to the information security community ( networking with / meeting information security pros ) and which organization is the most respected?

So, in your opinions which would be the most advantageous for an aspiring information security professional?

closed as primarily opinion-based by Deer Hunter, Bob Brown, Xander, Eric G, Neil Smithline Jan 9 '16 at 20:41

Many good questions generate some degree of opinion based on expert experience, but answers to this question will tend to be almost entirely based on opinions, rather than facts, references, or specific expertise. If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

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    My perception is that one can find some of "most respected security professionals" close to the open source community and their events. – Arminius Jan 9 '16 at 7:33

I was in the same boat as you are about a year ago. The way i got around it is by getting my hands dirty into the business. I am not sure what kind of role you aspire to be ( manager, researcher, penetration tester,etc). You need to figure that out first.

IMHO you cannot be a info sec manager without being good at say network security, pentesting, Linux admin etc. I believe a solid way to learn would be to take some certifications.

I personally did OSCP which teaches you alot. It has a much higher bar to clear as it is extremely lab driven. It takes hours and hours of hard work and patience to be a good info sec professional. If you don't want to pay for the course, how about spending some time hacking a couple of free vulnerable systems especially designed for pentesting novices.



All said and done I am not a big fan of meetings/discussions but others maybe.

May the force be with you! Good luck.

  • My plan is HelpDesk --> Network Admin --> Network Security --> Pen Testing --> Management. Maybe with certifications such as A+ --> Network+ --> Security+ --> CCNA --> CISSP / CEH --> CISM. I am taking my A+ this month and the subsequent certifications as soon as possible after that. Are you saying that you were able to become gainfully employed in the InfoSec field with a certification from Offensive Security? Or did you have other experience as well as certifications in addition to OSCP? Thanks for the links. – TT4M.C Jan 10 '16 at 0:20
  • @MattClendenen You plan seems to be a good one but may take a very long time to reach there ! OSCP is really good .You can read many online reviews about it. The learning curve is high so if you wanna be a pentester then you have to go through it. And to answer your question, I dont have any other certs before OSCP. In fact i was a n00b. – rockstar Jan 10 '16 at 15:13
  • What position were you first hired as? – TT4M.C Jan 10 '16 at 15:30
  • @MattClendenen Before OSCP i was working as a developer . However i was working in academia and all our projects were focused on security so it was a natural progression for me . – rockstar Jan 10 '16 at 16:04

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