2019-021-Chris Sanders discusses a cognitive crisis, mental models, and dependence on tools
Published June 4, 2019
47 min
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    I’ve argued for some time that information security is in a growing state of cognitive crisis…


    Demand outweighs supply

    Because so many organizations need experience, they are unable to appropriately invest in entry-level jobs and devote the necessary time for internal training.

    That’s an HR and hiring manager issue, right? --brbr  No. --bboettcher


    Information cannot be validated or trusted

        There are few authoritative sources of knowledge about critical components and procedures.


    Large systemic issues persist with no ability to tackle them in a large, mobilized, or strategic manner.

        The industry is unable to organize or widely combat the biggest issues they face.

        Groups of individuals, everyone thinking they have the ‘right answer’, just like linux flavors --brbr





    Dependence on tools: http://traffic.libsyn.com/brakeingsecurity/2016-006-Moxie_vs_Mechanism-dependence_on_tools.mp3





    How do we solve it?


    1. We must thoroughly understand the processes used to draw conclusions.
      1. S.M.A.R.T.?
    2. Experts must develop repeatable, teachable methods and techniques.
    3. Educators must build and advocate pedagogy that teaches practitioners how to think.

    https://www.maximumfun.org/shows/sawbones - sawbones podcast (amanda mentioned)

    Mental Model?

        We use them all the time? Gotta simplify the complex...

        Distribution and the Bell Curve

        Operant Conditioning


        The Scientific Method


    Applied Models


        13 Organ Systems

        4 Vital Signs

        10 Point Pain scale

    Defense in Depth

    OSI model

    Investigation Process




    Model Desperation

        Companies dumping existing models and embracing something else


    The problem is that we’re model hungry and we’ll rapidly use and abuse any reasonable model that presents itself. Ultimately, we want good models because we want a robust toolbox. But, not everything is a job for a hammer and we don’t need fourteen circular saws.


    What makes a good model?



    Imperfect? (wuh?)-brbr


    Creating models

        Begins by asking a question… (what is the weather going to look like tomorrow? --brbr)

            What defines the sandwich? (kind of like “https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Theory_of_forms” --brbr)


    Discuss the Rural Tech Fund https://twitter.com/RuralTechFund


    Practical Threat Hunting - https://twitter.com/chrissanders88/status/1133388347194454018

    Practical Packet Analysis - https://nostarch.com/packetanalysis3


    Suggesting books:



    More references on Chris’ site https://chrissanders.org/2019/05/infosec-mental-models/


    Book Club

    Cult of the dead cow - June

    Tribe of Hackers - July

    The Mastermind - August

    The Cuckoo’s Egg - September


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