I wanted to join the Home Office because I felt that it had great development opportunities and I knew that the work that I would be doing would be challenging, interesting, rewarding and have real importance in keeping the UK public safe.
I graduated from university with a degree in Business Management. At the time, I thought I wanted to work as a Business Analyst as I has experienced this during my placement year. It was only after graduating and a short spell in freelance writing, that I decided to pursue a career in the cyber security industry. I applied for an Information Security MSc programme and after being accepted, began looking for jobs where I could gain practical experience. Three years ago, I was offered a role as an Analyst in the Cyber Security Operations Centre (CSOC) within the Home Office. In November 2021 I was promoted to Senior Cyber Threat Analyst, working as part of the Cyber Threat Operations team.
My day-to-day work is very varied. My team and I are responsible for supporting the CSOC by investigating security incidents and identifying tactics, techniques and procedures used by people trying to do us harm. I create detection rules and develop responses based on information provided by our own teams, third parties and my own research. I also conduct ‘threat hunts’ and support activities to identify potential gaps in our security as well as improve the effectiveness of our existing cyber capabilities.
What I like most about the job is the variety of the work that I do. The threat landscape is constantly evolving, so there is never a dull day! I also enjoy the amount of freedom I have to explore ideas with my team and develop my skills on some great cyber security training platforms.
One of the benefits that the Home Office provides is flexible working. Both remote working and compressed hours have allowed me to gain a better work life balance. This is particularly valuable to me currently, whilst I undertake the final year of my MSc. In addition, I feel that the supportive and encouraging culture within the Home Office, and more specifically within the CSOC, makes it a great place to work.
If you were considering a career in the Home Office I would say ‘Do it!’. The department is a great place to work, with many development opportunities and each day offers something different.