Early in the morning on June 15th of 2020. Another intern and I rang the doorbell to the Arco IT office. As soon as we walked in, we were greeted by all the staff. I was excited to start this two-week internship as this was my first job experience. As we were choosing what desks to sit at, we received our laptops. I immediately opened mine, eager to install Python and write a script to code anything we would be told to. To my surprise, I was not able to start with what I had planned so instead we helped with office maintenance and got into setting up our workflow, time recording, and tasks for the day.
The next day, we received our assignments! I was assigned a task to build a filtering system which handpicks the vulnerabilities that the client is interested in. Naturally, as I have been recently honing my coding skills, I wanted to write a Python script to accomplish this task. I learned how to write my code in a more readable format so that it could be tweaked in the future by other programmers. Furthermore, this allowed me to understand how a client lays a project out (in terms of requirements) and how I could fulfill those requirements while thinking about what additional functionalities could be useful. This also improved my Python skills, specifically my “pandas” skill, which is a Python library that allows easy manipulation of data. Later that week, we had the opportunity to sit in at a client meeting, where we were exposed to the general structure of a business meeting. This experience helped us get a feel for the business environment, as well as allowed us to get a better idea of what exactly cyber security consultancy means and what tools teams use to manage their time well. Alongside this, I also learned about the tactic that attackers use to manipulate a company into stealing their information.
On Monday of the next week, we visited a client on–site, where I observed the process of extracting what exactly the client wants. We also observed that a major component of cybersecurity consulting is presenting data in an intuitive way for people without an understanding of cybersecurity who might be concerned about the risks to their business.
Overall, the internship was an enriching process where I learned about the importance of cybersecurity and gained helpful skills to help me navigate any future jobs, or scripting code.
By Lohithsai Yadalachanchu, student at Zürich International School