Saturday, March 20, 2010

Moving Forward on Reversing (Certification)

Sometimes I suprise myself and find that I really do know a little about some arbitrary topic. In this instance, I proved to myself that I really do know a little about Reverse Engineering Malware. Although this is something I partially (deobfuscating code, code analysis, etc.) do on a regular basis, I questioned my level of overall skill.

So, how did I suprise myself? I was given a practice exam (by someone who had some faith in me) for the GIAC Reverse Engineering Malware certification, and I decided to take it last night while at work. I took the practice exam cold and with no notes intentionally in order to gage where I was at on the topics.

Results:
Unfortunately, I did fail the exam. A 70% is required and I recieved a ~69%. The areas that I messed up on all involved either specific debuggers or some command line tools. I took this test in a little over an hour.

Why am I happy about this? I haven't had any real time in quite a while to play with debuggers, so getting questions regarding those wrong was expected, and an easy fix! Some time spent with some different tools and some review of some notes...no Problem there! The command line tools issue is also an easy fix: I just need to go back to basics on some things and use all the command line tools I can, when I can so that I stay fresh on there availability and options.

Path Forward on Reversing: The important thing to me about taking this test is that I took it cold and quick, and only failed by one question. What this means is that with a little bit of review and practice on forgotten tools and techniques, I should be able to sit the GREM and pass with a very good score! The GREM, GCIH, and GSNA (or maybe CEH), and MCSE are the remaining certs that I want to get. I am not worried about the GCIH, and now the GREM seems like I will do very well also, so this should be a productive year for me as far as certifications!