Information Security Reading List

Dakota Nelson
Jun 22, 2017

A lot of people ask me what they should do to get started in information security.

One of my first answers is to keep an eye on infosec news - not to try to stay on top of it all (honestly, that’s probably impossible at this point), but to keep an eye out for security news that piques your interest. It’s all about curiosity, and having breadth is critical - you can look up more information later, as long as you know what’s out there.

Nine times out of ten, I get a followup question - “well, ok then - what should I read?”


Image Steganography: A Beginner's Guide

Dakota Nelson
Nov 09, 2016

I’ve been busy lately writing a comprehensive 4-part series on steganography and error correcting codes on the Black Hills Information Security blog.

The step-by-step guide takes you from the fundamentals of steganography all the way through a full image steganography example. Not only that, but it also includes a steganography tool in Python for you to use - and explains it!


Introduction to OSINT: Recon-ng Tutorial

Dakota Nelson
Oct 06, 2016

Intelligence collection is manual. It’s tedious. It takes forever.

But you don’t have to do it all on your own.

Using tools like recon-ng, you can automate your open source intelligence collection process - whether it’s for business intelligence or security reconnaissance. Find out how to use recon-ng in this quick tutorial video:


Getting Started in Information Security

Dakota Nelson
Aug 18, 2016

Infosec is a way of life.

I’m probably getting nods from half of the information security (infosec) industry after saying that, and a disgusted look from the other half. For better or for worse, security is more than just a job for a huge number of people. What this means for the field is a whole different blog post, but it does certainly mean one thing:

Breaking into the security industry is staggeringly difficult for beginners.


First invoice!

Dakota Nelson
Jul 01, 2016

Today is an exciting landmark for Striker - our first invoice just went out!

Striker Security focuses on developing tools to support information security professionals by helping them grapple with the most difficult component of their work - acquisition, analysis, and application of mountains of data.

Our current work developing a system to geolocate attackers covers this entire spectrum - geolocation techniques, data collection, storage, and analysis, all the way through visualization, reporting and effective communication. The system is being developed for a small pentesting firm - stay tuned for its public release.

I’m incredibly excited to see where the road ahead takes us. If you would like to be part of the journey, get in touch or sign up for our mailing list below.


Stagers, and Metasploit Payload Size

Dakota Nelson
Nov 28, 2015

The idea here is to parse through the Metasploit Project’s available exploits to determine what the distribution of payload sizes is, with an eye to deciding whether that super cool stager idea you had the other day is worth pursuing.

If you’re familiar with the concepts of vulnerabilities, exploits, and stagers, go ahead and skip to the graphs below. Otherwise, read on:


A Framework for Data Exfiltration

Dakota Nelson
Sep 08, 2015

In August of 2015, I had the incredible opportunity to present alongside two others at BSides Las Vegas on command and control (C2) and data exfiltration (or infiltration) over publicly available cloud services.

The talk covered sneaky-creeper, a framework for C2 and data exfiltration I’ve been working on with a small group of contributors.

We present an overview of the framework, and briefly brush on future work, but I’d like to go further with this post into where the framework stands.