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AppSec and Employees Give Back

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Written By: Monika Morrow December 23, 2014

AppSec and its employees have a strong history of giving back to the community through sponsoring and volunteering. AppSec employees have been volunteers several years for theSummit, an annual charity event at DEF CON that has been a major fundraiser for the Electronic Frontier Foundation and other causes. Additionally, AppSec was proud to sponsor this year’s theSummit fundraiser.

AppSec employees regularly volunteer their time at conferences they attend such as DEF CON and ToorCon. In addition they proudly volunteer their time for kid-focused events such as HacKid, Hack the Hood, and a Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) career day.

HacKid Conference

This year brought the return of HacKid conference to AppSec’s hometown in San Jose. HacKid introduces kids aged 5-17 and their parents to variety of STEM topics ranging from soldering, engineering, and to how to protect their data on mobile devices. Our employees are grateful for the opportunity to use their skills to help the attendees of HacKid explore the world of programming, robotics, hacking, 3D printing and more.

Hack the Hood

AppSec employees participate in Oakland’s Hack the Hood program. Hack the Hood is an award-winning non-profit that introduces low-income youth of color to careers in tech by hiring and training them to build websites for real small businesses in their own communities.  During workshops and 6-week "Boot Camps," young people gain valuable hands-on experience building mobile-friendly websites, executing search engine optimization, and helping businesses get listed in local online directories. In addition to relevant technical skills, youth also learn critical leadership, entrepreneurship, and life skills under the guidance of staff members and volunteer mentors who are professionals working in the field.

STEM Career Day

AppSec employees participated in a STEM career day this year to introduce students in grades K-5 to ethical hacking, penetration testing, and general computer security. Our volunteers covered a wide range of topics, including passwords, mobile device security, and safe online practices.  Students were able to relate to the concepts presented as they related to Minecraft, a popular online game, as well as the online banking systems that are used in the children’s homes.

Monika Morrow

Monika Morrow is a Senior Security Consultant at AppSec Consulting. Monika is an expert in black-box and white-box mobile and web application penetration testing and helped develop AppSec Consulting’s mobile testing mythology. She utilizes manual techniques and automated scanning tools such as Burp Professional, AppScan Standard Edition, Qualys, and Nessus. When these tools don’t work, she is often able to write a Burp extension to deal with the unusual behavior causing the problem. Noticing a lack of available reference material for writing Burp extensions Monika developed and delivered a talk at BayThreat 4, “So You Want to Build A Burp Plugin?” to share this knowledge with the community. Monika also volunteers her time to local STEM events such as HacKid and local career days.

Monika received her Bachelor of Science in Computer Science from California State University, Chico. After college Monika worked for six years as a C++ software developer at the Naval Air Warfare Center Weapons Division – China Lake for the Department of the Navy. After moving to San Jose, prior to joining AppSec Consulting, she added Java , C#, and Objective C programming to her skill set and started the development of an iOS application. Since joining AppSec Consulting Monika has transitioned her skills to security testing where she has spent four years black-box and white-box testing Web and Mobile applications in addition to performing security training and developing specialized testing tools.

When not researching new security technologies or actively assessing corporate security, Monika enjoys spending time with family and friends, volunteering, driving unique cars, photography, biking, yo-yoing, and gymnastics.

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