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Hexordia Founder, Jessica Hyde
Join us as we speak with Jessica Hyde. Jessica is the founder at Hexordia, a consultant at Magnet Forensics, and an adjunct professor at George Mason University. She is heavily involved in the DFIR community and has quite the fan base on Twitter, you can find her @B1N2H3X. We know you will enjoy getting to know her and hearing her perspective on all topics of digital forensics.
[01:00] Debbie and Jessica talk about meeting on Twitter, being nerds, and why Jessica likes to hangout on the social media platform.
- Both Debbie and Jessica touch on the importance of community.
[02:25] Jessica shares her background with listeners.
- Jessica brings 15 years of digital forensics experience to the table. She spent time honing her skills in the US Marine Corps and IED analysis world before transitioning to digital forensics and working with the DoD, IC, and more, before working as the Director of Forensics at Magnet for 5 years and recently launching Hexordia.
- Jessica goes on to discuss the changes happening in the digital forensics field and the human side of digital forensics.
- Jessica explains that Twitter is the place to know what’s going on in DFIR.
[04:41] Jessica dives into the path she took that lead to the career she has today.
- Jessica reveals she was a high school dropout, but she was writing her first programs in basic at the age of four on her uncle’s Commodore 64.
- Listeners learn about Jessica’s punk rock phase while living in New York City, her experience watching the Twin Towers fall, joining the Marine Corps, and going back to school and earning an engineering degree and the other doors that opened for her after serving as part of the USMC.
- You don’t need a traditional path to pursue digital forensics as a career choice. The only path you need is yours.
[12:25] Wilton shares his thoughts on what it’s like coming from a military background himself. Wilton served in US Navy as an electrician’s mate.
- Wilton elaborates on how a lot of the theory he learned as an electrician’s mate helped him when he was first tossed into the world of digital forensics.
[13:45] Listeners learn about how and why Jessica started her company, Hexordia.
- Jessica explains that she gets to do two cool things with Hexordia: focus on government service contracts in training and forensic services for DoD and IC and make digital forensics more accessible to folks who are going nontraditional routes.
- Hexoridia is writing a mobile forensics curriculum in addition to the numerous other courses and certifications they (will) offer.
[21:37] Wilton marvels at the fact the courses Hexordia will offer will start at the beginner level.
- Advanced topics are also available.
- Classes are modular so you can start at the level you’re comfortable with or want to refresh your knowledge about.
[23:27] Debbie and Jessica shift the conversation to women in DFIR and other marginalized communities in the space.
- Jessica states that it’s important to support diversity in the field is to encourage people to share their technical prowess and their platforms.
- Give the microphone to the people who need it.
- Recognize that top people in our field come from all different backgrounds, all different genders, all different expressions.
[27:46] Jessica shares some initiatives she’s proud to support that are focused on providing opportunities to people in early in their career.
- Cyber Sleuth Labs
- Play Like A Girl
[34:29] The conversation pivots to the topic of lawful access.
- Debbie talks about the debate in the DFIR world about law enforcement tools, truth seeking, and data collection.
- Jessica asks and answers the question: “Is it appropriate that some training and tools are limited to law enforcement?”
[46:47] Wilton and Jessica wrap up with a brief discussion on some of the biggest changes they’ve seen in the digital forensics field over the course of their careers.