FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Recognition of Cerco IT’s continued commitment to the Armed Forces
Tuesday, 12th July, 2022 – Today, Cerco IT Ltd, a company with over 30 years of IT training experience, announced the awarding of the Armed Forces Gold Covenant.
On the award, Cerco IT’s Managing Director, Chris Barlow, said, “We’ve always enjoyed a high percentage of military veterans coming through our training courses who then go on to enjoy a successful career as IT technicians, engineers and, more recently, cyber security professionals. To be honoured with this award by the MoD is credit to our hard-working staff, each veteran’s desire to cross train into IT and the support and dedication of our employment partners.“
To achieve this prestigious award, Cerco has worked tirelessly in forming strong relationships with a number of Armed Forces charities, including, Walking With the Wounded, The White Ensign Group and The Poppy Factory.
Cerco continues to support military veterans, reservists, cadet volunteers, service leavers and their families by providing free IT training and cyber security courses followed by a clear pathway into an alternative career.
In May 2022 Cerco opened its new training rooms in Canada Street, Manchester, the home of Walking With the Wounded. Later this year there are plans to open another training room onboard HMS Belfast, London, the home of The White Ensign Group.
About Cerco IT Ltd.
Founded in 1989 as Granada IT Services in Manchester, Cerco IT provides practical training courses for candidates looking to start a career in IT.
In 2003 Cerco added a recruitment division to enable the support and placement of trainees into fully paid work.
Cerco continues to offer free training to suitable candidates.
For more information please visit cercoit.co.uk or call 01270 219760.
Building on top of 30+ years of experience in IT training and placing entry level server engineers and technicians, Cerco IT, in 2021, developed a programme to address the alarming shortfall in the UK’s Cyber Security talent pool.
According to the UK Government there is an estimated short fall of 10,000 Cyber Security
professionals per year in the UK recruitment pool.
Perhaps when we think of ‘hackers’ we conjure an image of a socially awkward teenager in a dark room, dressed in a hoodie and surrounded by glowing monitors. To a certain degree this may be accurate but the problem is much worse than this somewhat simplistic, almost romantic vignette may suggest.
The greater threat comes from state sponsored activity that operates on such a large scale it is almost unfathomable.
Once upon a time it was important just to have a website. If you had the budget you’d hire a specialist web design agency. If you didn’t, or, worse still, you considered it a mere gimick to keep up with, you may have handed responsibility to your nephew in his bedroom. As eminently capable as either of these developers was they couldn’t have foreseen the threat that lay ahead which in turn didn’t accurately inform them of the correct technical decisions to make.
Regardless of the underlying technology, many websites have developed and evolved over the last 20 – 25 years to the point where they require teams of people to maintain. Server technology evolves as do network capabilities and encryption methods. But sat beneath many websites is a code base that hasn’t been overhauled in years. To a hacker with determination these websites are little more than playgrounds.
Sensitive data may be residing within insecure databases whose front door is left wide open by poor coding. User input via a web form may be injected straight into a database query with little or no sanitisation. This was quite common 20 years ago but in 2022 it is unforgivable.
A perfectly viable question to ask is, how well do you know your website and its underlying technology?
But a far more damaging question would be, how well does a hacker with nefarious intent know your website and underlying technology?
If you were so inclined you could construct a diagram that illustrates exactly how information is handled on your network. This may be a network local to your business premises (LAN) or a wider network that links numerous premises (WAN). Ideally of course you would already have this diagram and would review it periodically for improvement and maintenance purposes.
This visualisation is precisely what a hacker is attempting to achieve. Where are your weaknesses? Where might there be a hub that requires configuration? e.g. a firewall.
Requests that are routed through your network may not have always come from a legitimate source. With the correct tools and a keen eye you can respond to such threats. But far better is to identify the weak links in your network configuration before anyone from the outside has had chance to exploit them.
To a hacker bent on maximum disruption a vulnerable network is as good as the door to the bank vault blowing freely in the wind.
Unsurprisingly the attack methods that we have touched upon have numerous names. Collectively we refer to this scenario as the attack or threat surface. Essentially, where can I gain access to your system and wreak havoc.
Each of these nefarious attack methods is a form of penetration and the discipline of identifying vulnerabilities is known as penetration testing.
Penetration testers are a huge part of the 10,000 per year shortfall in the cyber security talent pool.
At Cerco IT we take candidates from all walks of life with a background in IT and passion for security and train them to be penetration testers.
Many of our trainees have worked with us before as Field Service Engineers. Many have come to us from employers looking to strengthen their security teams. And many have come to us from a position within the UK Armed Forces. In fact our relationship with numerous Armed Forces charities and our recognition as a Silver Covenant Award winner for our commitment to those leaving service is something were are immensly proud of.
Our fully trained and passionate penetration testers already posses numerous skills and accreditations. Here are just a few:
If you are looking to strengthen your Cyber Security team and are interested in hiring hungry and freshly trained talent with today’s crucially relevant skills, please do contact us.
We’d be more than happy to schedule a call with you either via a traditional landline or through MS Teams.
You can read more about our Cradle to Cyber programme within our brochure.
We hope to speak with you soon and help you protect your business from the phantom menace.