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Thomas Bienasz

Cyber technologist

Cyber security careers

We sat down with a real-life cyber pro to ask your burning study and career questions

Helping his parents navigate technology as a child sparked Thomas’s interest in tech. Fast-forward to high school and cyber security stood out when it came time to consider his career options.

“I saw it as a promising career pathway with jobs in the future and lots of interesting opportunities,” he says.

Thomas completed a Bachelor of Cyber Security at Macquarie University, then scored a role at Darktrace, an artificial intelligence company and global leader in cyber security.

As a cyber technologist, he’s responsible for providing technical and cyber defence expertise to Darktrace’s customers.

CwS: What was the coolest thing you did or learnt while studying cyber security at Macquarie Uni?

TB: In one subject, we actually learnt some of the ways to breach systems using hacking techniques. It was really interesting to research that and see systems from a cyber attacker’s perspective. Another cool subject was digital forensics – we got to look at how a user might try to delete mass amounts of documents from their hard drive, but using special software we can still view it.

CwS: How is a cyber security degree different to a computer science or IT degree?

TB: Cyber security is a niche, I’d say. IT and computer science degrees are more about classic programming and coding. There’s still coding in cyber security, but it’s more about being on your toes and aware of your surroundings, and being able to anticipate and think like the attacker. We learn how to make a barrier to make it less likely for attackers to perform successful hacks.

CwS: I’m still in high school – what kind of things can I be doing right now to set myself up for a career in cyber security?

TB: Try to do as many IT courses at school as possible for your elective subjects. I only did one and didn’t realise I could do more, which probably would have been beneficial for me for uni. There are also some great YouTube documentaries on things like scams and hacks that have been occurring recently – that will help you be on top of what’s going on in the world.

Thomas’ pathway

This article is sponsored by Macquarie University and was originally published in Careers with STEM: Cyber Security – the flip cover to Careers with STEM: Technology.

Careers with STEM: Cyber Security
Careers with STEM: Cyber Security

Order a print copy here or read the e-mag for free

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