August 7, 2022

TSD #001: Hello Friend

My first newsletter. What on Earth is this all about?

Hello friend 👋

Welcome to my first-ever weekly email. I write weekly reports in my day job as a Cyber Threat Intelligence (CTI) specialist, but this one feels very different. Let's embrace it!

The point of the newsletter is to help get things out of my head and onto 'paper' in an effort to declutter my mind and create a bit of a record. There's also an accountability angle. I'll be more inclined to keep learning, creating, and growing if I make myself accountable to my subscribers.

For this first week, I want to shine a light on some of the challenges of being a creator around a cyber-security day job and a young family. I often get asked about time management and how I stay focused and productive, so this will help address it.

A Dad/CTI Specialist/Creator's Day

My typical weekday day starts at 0700.

My daughter wakes me up with a run and jump into bed for an episode of Teletubbies or Bing. The best wake-up I could ever dream of. 15 minutes later we're downstairs for breakfast. Then I’m showered, dressed, walking the dog by 0815 and home in time for the daily stand-up at 0900.

Then it's a jam-packed day of CTI work. Checking open and closed intelligence sources, cross-referencing information to verify it, and calls with a variety of organisations to discuss the latest goings on. It's great work.

During lunch, I'll eat with my family - trying to dodge my daughter's attempts to put beans in my hair, and then I'll spend the remainder of lunch keeping the ball rolling on content for LinkedIn or YouTube. Then I'm back into the world of CTI and finish up the day at 1700. The time between 1700 and dinner I use to keep that same ball rolling again. A sentence here; an edit there.

Shortly after 1700, I hear my daughter calling up the stairs for me, "Dinner ready Daddy" in her delicate, sweet voice. From dinner until 1900 is dedicated to family time. My phone is in a scheduled do not disturb mode.

At 1900 the little one is tucked into bed and then evening work begins:

  • Editing video.
  • Recording video.
  • Checking analytics.
  • Making thumbnails.
  • Responding to DMs and emails.
  • Writing for LinkedIn and YouTube.
  • Calls with people across industry.
  • Adding sound effects & music to video.
  • Scheduling content 2 weeks in advance.

Every night isn't as rammed full as this. I do mix it up with an episode of something with my wife and exercise in my home gym. If you're trying to get into the world of creating, here's a post about time management that might help you out:

Humans can't truly multi-task, it's mostly just context-switching. I try and make smart use of my time. In the morning whilst walking the dog, I'll catch the latest episode of the SANS Internet Storm Centre podcast. And as the latest episode of my favourite security podcasts gets released, I'll listen to them on my HomePod as I work throughout the day. I keep organised notes and tasks in Notion and Apple's Reminders app, depending on their context. I put keep deadlines for everything in my calendar and I have bookmarks and shortcuts set up for all of my accounts. I will take every action necessary to make it as seamless as possible to get things done.

Mostly, I find that it’s just about staying organised and keeping the momentum going in the right direction.

I hope you have a great week and I’ll see you next Sunday.

Gary ✌️

Fun Things This Week

📹 My New Videos

This newsletter is called The Sunday Download, coincidentally, my latest video is about downloading. If you're new to the command line, this video on how to download and transfer files using Wget is a basic skill you need to know.

🎙 Podcasts

SANS Internet Storm Centre

The SANS Internet Storm Centre, presented by Johannes Ulrich, it's a nice daily (Mon-Fri) podcast that lasts around 5 minutes and gives you a few key events from the world of cyber to pay attention to.

Recorded Future

This episode of The Record focuses on the Pegasus spyware made by NSO Group, a shadowy Israeli company that has been accused of supplying spyware to oppressive regimes around the world in order to spy on journalists and government officials.

👾 Cool Tools
  • PersistenceSniper is a Powershell script that can be used by Blue Teams, Incident Responders and System Administrators to hunt persistences implanted in Windows machines.
  • Kage is designed for the Metasploit RPC Server to interact with meterpreter sessions and generate payloads.

P.S. Some of the links in this newsletter are affiliate links and help support my content. Thank you for your support! ✌️

More Articles
Subscribe to The Sunday Download

Receive weekly news and insights in your inbox. Don't miss out!

Thank you! Your submission has been received!
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.