Proud To Be Pulsar: A Successful Jump from Military Veteran to Offensive Hacker
Pulsar Security is about its people - training, certification, and lifelong learning is our culture and one we are proud of. It’s a big part of why we are able to hire and retain a highly motivated and capable team.
Meet Corey Belanger, Security Consultant & QA Lead at Pulsar. Corey is an 8-year Army Veteran who completed a tour of duty in Afghanistan. He entered the Army fresh out of high school and advanced to a technical engineer where he was responsible for technical instruments, surveys, and specs that required complicated QA talent.
After receiving an Honorable Discharge Corey returned home but quickly realized that his highly respected role in the Army didn’t easily convert to a job in the civilian world. Motivated, yet frustrated, Corey worked at a landscaping business for a number of years. Then, he got a break when his high-school best friend convinced him to apply for a role at Pulsar Security.
As part of his interview, “I had to put together a personal ‘battlecard’ – a map that showed what I learned in the Army along with my life objectives and interests to show what I could do on the job every day. Pulsar gave me the chance to prove what I was good at – that was a huge confidence booster that helped me realize that I could make the jump into a technical civilian role.”
His manager and mentor at Pulsar saw his depth of understanding of concepts like defense, control, completing objectives, and thinking like the enemy, and recognized how those skills could translate into a security role at the company. With the encouragement and support of Pulsar management, Corey started taking online coding tutorials and quickly advanced to earning prestigious certifications including Network+, Security+, GIAC Certified Incident Handler, GIAC Python Coder, GIAC Web App Penetration Testing, and GIAC Penetration Tester certifications.
“I’m lucky that I work with a team that pushes each other to keep learning not just for the company but to better themself”, said Corey.
Corey also got involved in teaching others who are new to offensive security as an organizer of BsidesNH and founding member of TechRamp, which help others build their skills for careers in security and technology.
If the cyber security market size is projected to reach $258.99 billion by 2025 where will the security professionals come from? Whether it’s ex-military or a non-technical background, the key to success, as Corey states, “is your willingness and desire to learn how technology works – figuring out the why of cybersecurity – and then continuing to keep playing in it every day!”