Profile: Bob Fletcher, IT Security Engineer, ISG
Bob Fletcher has been a member of CIS for over two decades. Initially working for the Computer Store when it was part of CIS, he later became a technician in Service & Repair. In 2001 he moved to the Network Technology Group where he took on ever growing responsibilities, eventually becoming a Security Engineer in September of 2007. As part of the CIS reorganization in May of 2008 he became a member of the new ISG. Bob's work focuses primarily on the operational side of the ISG which includes firewall changes, vulnerability scans, and maintaining ISG systems.
Q. What occurs during one of your typical days?
A. My work days tend to be rather fluid. It is always a balancing act responding to requests for firewall changes, troubleshooting problems, reviewing news and mail lists for indications of new threats or vulnerabilities, and working on various projects.
Q. Computing is changing so rapidly, with new risks developing on a daily basis bring ever new security challenges. How do you keep abreast of those changes?
A. I am always monitoring postings to various security web sites and mail lists, I have my own personal library of security publications, and I attend various training sessions throughout the year.
Q. What attracted you to information security?
A. I guess in some respects I've always been security minded. I was always the one checking doors to be sure they were locked, whether at home or at my father's office. For a short time I took a job as a security guard at one of the local hospitals before I started working for Brown. My primary career interest has always been computers. You could say it has evolved to the point of incorporating my interests in security.
Q. What are some of the projects you'll be working on during the coming months?
A. Currently it is a new VPN system. I've also been supporting others on the Disaster Recovery (DR) project. Down the road is a little more enigmatic.
Q. What do you do to relax, when not thinking about firewalls, DNS or pen testing?
A. I read books, largely history and biographies; I watch movies; I love photography and with digital photography take many more photos; and lately have been interviewing my relatives as part of a little genealogical project of mine. Recently I went to the New Hampshire Highland Games and I'm planning to go soon to King Richard's Faire.
Q. What would be the most important piece of information security advice that you'd like to pass on to the average user?
A. Semper Vigilans! Be always alert or on your guard. Think before you click that link or respond to someone's request for information. Criminals are always looking for ways to exploit your trust and sense of safety. Many websites that people think are safe can still compromise your computer and people asking for information – on the phone or in an email – may sound legitimate but may not be. Don't be afraid to question anything.
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