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Careers in Security and Privacy: Advice from an Expert
AUG 22, 2018 16:43 PM
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Careers in Security and Privacy: Advice from an Expert

by Lori Cameron
 
For this career article, we interviewed David Kotz who co-authored the article "Privacy and Security in Mobile Health: A Research Agenda" in the June 2016 issue of Computer magazine. Kotz is the Champion International Professor in the Department of Computer Science at Dartmouth College and serves on the US Healthcare IT Policy Committee. His research interests include security and privacy, pervasive computing for healthcare, and wireless networks. We asked Kotz about careers in privacy and security.
 
ComputingEdge: What types of tech advances in the field of security and privacy will see the most growth in the next several years?   
 
Kotz: I expect to see increased activity related to IoT security & privacy, including wearables, home devices, and smart infrastructure—if only because those products are likely to be spreading rapidly in the next few years.
 
ComputingEdge: What advice would you give college students to give them an advantage over the competition?  
 
Kotz: Be curious. Go beyond the curriculum—get involved in research, co-curricular projects, and summer internships.  Read widely, and seek out professors and mentors who can help you learn.  Prepare for a career in which you are constantly learning.
 
ComputingEdge: If a graduate must begin work as an intern, freelancer, or independent contractor in the field of security and privacy, what are some tips for building a strong portfolio for presentation in possible future interviews?   
 
Kotz: Prepare a selection of papers, source code, or other documents that demonstrate your track record, and be prepared to describe your individual contributions to the work—especially important for group projects.
 
ComputingEdge: Name one critical mistake for young graduates to avoid when starting their careers?   
 
Kotz: Searching too narrowly—focusing only on big-name firms, or specific types of jobs; keep in mind that security is an issue in nearly every sector and there may be interesting opportunities in a wide variety of firms and organizations. 
 
ComputingEdge’s Lori Cameron interviewed Kotz for this article. Contact her at l.cameron@computer.org if you would like to contribute to a future computing careers article. Contact Kotz at kotz@cs.dartmouth.edu.
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