My Journey To HackerU’s Master Certificate in Red Team.
In this blog I will walk through my amazing journey in achieving HackerU’s Master certificate in red team. Today we are living in a technology world. Anyone who is not using the modern technology can be called alien. I was some what alien when I was a Senior Engineer at L&T construction. I never knew what is hacking and their perspective, till I was encountered with a situation where I wanted to use high speed internet from the Wi-Fi at the L&T BIAL project office. The high speed Wi-Fi access was given to few employees in the project and I did not have access to it. My request to admin department to get access was rejected. This is where I first googled “how to hacking Wi-Fi?”. And with lot of googling, I was finally able to hack into the Wi-Fi and I was able to use the high speed Wi-Fi to download movies. I cannot explain the amount of joy I felt when I did that.
This is the time I decided to make my career in cyber security. But I was struck. How to start? Where to start? Thanks to my friend Varun, I got the answers to these questions from him. HackerU’s Masters certificate in red team by Jigsaw Academy in collaboration with Israel’s premier cybersecurity training provider HackerU. Varun motivated me to join the program. I enrolled for the program in October 2020. But, I had to pass the phase 1 and 2 of exam to qualify for the actual program. I was really stressed and I was finding extremely difficult to follow the topics taught in class. I was still working when I enrolled for the course, this made it still more difficult. This is when Swaroop Yermalkar sir’s (Head HackerU India) guidance to be patient and try harder helped me. His words kept me going.
Most of the phase one classes were taught by Idan and Swaroop sir, which covered networking and Linux concepts. I was relived and happy when I got to know that I was selected for phase 3.
Phase 3, this is where the actual work starts. I was still finding it difficult to manage the classes with the work schedule. So, I resigned to my job and left the organization on 31 December 2020. This is when I started dedicating myself completely towards my studies.
Instructor Azaz Ahmed Dobiwala taught Bypassing the perimeter, windows privilege escalation and Active directory classes. He covered latest trending topics along with the syllabus. Any trending and latest topic he is the go to guy.
Then came the exiting topics, wifi hacking and advanced infrastructure attacks. These topics were covered by Swaroop sir. He has authored a book on wifi hacking. He has great knowledge. He taught complex topics in easy way to understand. Then came one of my favorite instructor Yogendra Swaroop Srivatsa. He is one of the youngest Indian to crack OSCP. He possesses great skills and taught us python programming.
Another great instructor Bharat Dangwal covered all the web application pnetesting which were most interesting. Deepak Kumar he is my favorite. He is not just instructor but is also a guide to me. He helped me a lot when ever I faced any problem. He taught us mobile application pretesting and buffer overflow attacks. Cool calm and charming Rama sir covered IOT, Threat and malware analysis. And I enjoyed every class of Ram sir.
There used to be assessment exams after every module to asses our learning. Initially I was scoring low in the exams, but, then caught up with my learning pace once I got through the basics. Apart from the HackerU classes and exams, The Cywar platform provided by HackerU helped me to get hands on practice to the real-world problems.
Most exciting time for me was Saturday and Sunday challenge time. We would be provided with a machine and were asked crack it in 1-hour time. And I loved cracking the boxes. There used to be walkthrough sessions on the box in case if we fail to solve the box. Most of the walkthroughs were done by Deepak, who used his OSCP experience and knowledge in explaining us the techniques and approach to solve. This helped me develop skills in solving CTFs. As of now I have cracked 10 active boxes from Hack the box. Thanks to Deepak and the box solving sessions which boosted my skills and confidence in solving the boxes. I cannot explain my joy after finding a flag or get a shell.
Next comes the final part of the course. We had 2 exams one theory exam and other practical exam. The final practical exam was just like the OSCP exam, which was 48 hours exam for 100 marks. We were given 5 machine to solve in first 24 hours and write a report in next 24 hours. I was able to crack all the five machine in the stipulated time and submitted a detailed report on 5th September 2021. I was happy and I knew that I cleared the exam. After 3 days I got the final results and I scored 100 marks. No words to explain how happy I was after that. Soon I will be receiving my Master certificate in red team.
Apart from the course, I made great friends from our batch. All my classmates were amazing in their own abilities. I learnt a lot from them. Thank you to all guys. You guys are amazing.
One thing that I realized during the course was that, there is never a final stop for learning in cyber security domain. Our learning should be continuous, get updated with latest developments in security and technology. With all said, my next goal is to crack OSCP exam…
Thank you for reading this blog. I hope this helps you.