I’m a long time lurker, first time poster. I have been reading EH.net for some time now and the folks here seem extremely knowledgeable, talented and friendly (which is hard to find now a day with the anonymity that the internet provides).
A little about me
I have been working as a linux admin for the past 6 years. I have a bachelor’s degree in CompSci(2003) and a masters in NetSec(2008) which I have not really been able to use at my current position, excluding the hardening of infrastructure, catching, cleaning up and stopping of attacks etc.. I have a decent understanding of networking and linux. I can understand and program a little in C, C++, Perl and BASH. I am also currently working my way through udacity.com CS101 and cs262 in order to gain some python knowledge.
In 2013, I have made it a goal of mine to find a job as a pen tester (net/web) and would love some advice from everyone here on how to make the move from linux admin into security. So my questions to the community are:
1)Which certs are a must have for someone with my background in order to break into this field?
I’m definitely going for the OSCP, since it just seems like it would be a blast.
2)How should I prepare for the OSCP? I would like to be as ready as possible for the class so I can spend 90% of my time in the labs instead of taking 1 month to go over all the material and then only having 1 month for the labs.
3)Which books are a must read for anyone in this field and to prepare for the certs you suggest in question 1?
So far I have bought and am reading through the following:
Advanced Penetration Testing for Highly-Secured Environments
Hacking The Art of Exploitation, 2nd Edition
Metasploit - The Penetration Testers Guide
Professional Penetration Testing
The Web Application Hacker's Handbook
4)What skills are a must have in pen testing/netsec?
5)Which websites/blogs are a must read for any pen tester?
I’m already subscribed to a ton but would like to know what everyone’s favorites are.
6)What free and good training material is out there?
Sorry about all the questions I’m just a noob.