Jason Ford first joined Accenture as a graduate in 2013, before moving to a small consulting company after about three years. Late last year, he returned to Accenture with the opportunity to take a leadership role in our offensive cyber security practice. Find out more about why he’s excited to be back and some of the opportunities in our cyber security practice.

The statement is a cliché, but I’m really passionate about cyber security. In my new role at Accenture, I’m focused on helping clients to have a 360-degree view of everything cyber related and their security risks. As an offensive security specialist, it’s my job to detect vulnerabilities and show clients what their blind spots are when it comes to security.

Threats can often be unexpected
The current state of cyber security is vast and ever changing. As offensive security professionals, being able to dissect what these cyber criminals are doing and working with incident response teams to understand the tools, techniques and procedures being used is key.

When we run simulations of an adversarial attack, sometimes we’re more successful than we imagine. Thinking outside the box to find those potential exploits and risks is one of the most fulfilling parts of our work.

Enjoying some drinks with friends.

Keeping pace in a fast-changing environment
One of my biggest reasons for returning to Accenture is that our security team is growing with an increasing market share. The sheer size and diversity of our cyber security work can get lost among smaller, pure play firms, but with a large and growing team across Australia, we’re one of the biggest players in Australia. Our work spans a mix of clients, and no two days are ever the same.

Having previously worked at Accenture, I knew that there’s a strong commitment to professional development and training. But I was still was blown away when I joined and I put together a proposal covering different courses, skills and certifications. In just a matter of days I had approval for a significant training investment. At other jobs, I’ve had to fight tooth and nail to get training – and have had conditions about needing to pay back money if I left within a certain time period. At Accenture, there’s a no strings attached commitment to giving our people the skills they need to be successful.

In cyber security, particularly offensive security, there’s a huge number of sub disciplines and it continually gets harder to find vulnerabilities. This means we need to put a lot of time into study to evade detection and keep skills up-to-date to keep ahead of networks of cyber criminals and help protect our clients from an attack.

For my own professional development, I’m moving into more of a managerial and pre-sales role (while still retaining some of the technical aspects of the job that I love – after all, once a techie, always a techie!) so I’m building my skills in that area. I want to continue helping clients to get a full vision of their cyber security position and possible attack vectors, not to scare them but so they know how best to address the risks.

A strong team
As well as the professional development and team growth opportunities, the other major thing that brought me back to Accenture is the team culture. From my time in the graduate program, one of the best things about Accenture was the sense of being a strong team, and that’s certainly true again now that I’ve returned.

The offensive security team is small, but we’ve got such strong team morale. We’re also part of the wider Accenture security team, and there’s always opportunities to connect with colleagues both personally and professionally. There’s an investment in the team, as well as social events like team drinks and special events. Being part of a large organisation like Accenture also means there’s so much potential for on-the-job learning (in addition to the formal training I mentioned above) and collaboration across different parts of the business on client projects.

If you are looking for your next cyber security opportunity that offers great training and the chance to do meaningful work, we’d love to hear from you.


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Jason Ford

Consultant, Security, Accenture Technology, Accenture ANZ

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