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Additional Info

Job title of nominated professionalPrincipal Consultant
Company (where nominated professional or team is working)Red Siege Information Security (volunteer at North Dakota State University)
Websitendsu.edu/cybersecurity
Company size (employees)5,000 to 9,999
Headquarters RegionNorth America

In 3 bullets, summarize why this professional or team deserves recognition:

* Experienced penetration tester with over 25 years of experience in IT and security. He has worked in the ISP, financial, insurance, and agribusiness industries.
* Holds GCIH, GPEN, GWAPT, GMOB, CISSP, and OSCP certifications.
* Volunteers at North Dakota State University helping train the next generation of IT security professionals. Mike helped with the Hack NDSU penetration testing event and helped students prepare for the Collegiate Penetration Testing Competition event.

Overview

Mike Saunders is a Principal Consultant for Red Siege Information Security. He has over 25 years of experience in IT and security and has worked in the ISP, financial, insurance, and agribusiness industries. He has held a variety of roles in his career including system and network administration, development, and security architect. Mike been performing penetration tests for nearly a decade. Mike is an experienced speaker and has spoken at DerbyCon V and VII, BSides MSP, BSides Winnipeg, and the NDSU Cyber Security Conference. He has recently presented, on topics including “Assumed Breach: A Better Model for Penetration Testing,” at the Long Con 2019, Wild West Hackin’ Fest 2019, BSides Minneapolis, BSides Birmingham and DerbyCon 2019. He has participated multiple times as a member of the North Central Collegiate Cyber Defense Competition Red Team. Mike holds the GCIH, GPEN, GWAPT, GMOB, CISSP, and OSCP certifications.

This nomination, however, focuses primarily on the work that Mike has done in support of NDSU’s cybersecurity educational programs. In support of these activities, Mike has given multiple presentations on cybersecurity careers and technical topics.

Mike was integral to the launch of NDSU’s leading ‘Hack NDSU’ program. Hack NDSU gives students real penetration testing experience by allowing them to perform authorized ethical hacking of the NDSU network and server systems. Students had the option of performing testing on their own, under the supervision of the professional penetration testers and NDSU IT staff, or following along with the penetration testing professionals.

Mike led one day of the event, demonstrating professional penetration techniques for students and suggesting and supervising their ethical hacking activities.

Mike also helped NDSU students prepare for the Collegiate Penetration Testing Competition. He presented to the students on professional penetration testing techniques and proper documentation.