Tackling new challenges in offensive security fuels my curiosity

Kyle Avery

Where it all began

I have been tinkering with computers for as long as I can remember. My dad introduced me to the field by helping me set up a personal website and hosting game servers when I was in middle school. These early encounters instilled in me a foundation of programming and information systems.

My understanding continued to grow through high school, where I took programming classes in Java and mobile app development. It was around this time I became interested in computer security and decided to get a university degree in Cybersecurity. My experience was further enriched with computer security and offensive security clubs. Capture The Flag competitions provided practical experience and excited me even more. My first job in the field was a natural progression from the hands-on experiences and inspiration I gleaned from those clubs and exercises.

Where it went to from there

The dynamic nature of offensive security drew me in to the field of penetration testing and red teaming. Building upon my early exposure to technology, my journey into offensive security was shaped by personal projects, driven by problems I encountered during our operations. Guided by colleagues and mentors, I continued to develop my skills and find new interests. The challenges of creating solutions fueled my passion and deepened my understanding of the field.

My coolest project ever

Tasked with creating an offensive security team from the ground up at a prior company, I was entrusted with building a program that conducted penetration testing, purple teaming, and red teaming for the organization. The task was beyond my experience at the time and required me to develop procedures, policies, and technical capabilities. In a short time, I finalized processes and began offering internal services. This project had a great impact on my perspective, as it went beyond the technical allure of offensive security to reveal the impact such a team could have on the rest of a business. By the time I moved on, the program was complete and we had conducted numerous exercises, enriching both the organization and my understanding of the broader role of offensive security.

Kyle has been tinkering with computers for as long as he can remember.

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