Certification: Sucess Stories


Researcher and student

Jonathan Pittman, Mississippi State University, Center for Computer Security Research

C and Assembly System Development
Vulnerability Analysis

When Jonathan Pittman told his faculty supervisor that he'd passed the GSSP, that professor, who heads MSU's Computer Security Research Center, posted a news release about it.

"The vast majority of security problems in computing stems from poor programming practices. My director understands that educating and certifying programmers is a critical step in targeting and eliminating this rich attack surface," says Pittman, 27, a National Guardsman. Between active duty deployments, Pittman is completing his Master's in Computer Science at the university.

Pittman took the GSSP certification test to validate his skill in vulnerability analysis as well as to represent the university's computer security program in the process. He brushed up by taking the August '07, SANSFIRE Secure Coding in C and C++ course in Washington.

"Preparing for the exam has strengthened my abilities," he adds. "The exam helped to further confirm the value of the education I received in computer security from Mississippi State University."