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Norwin Technologies Corp. Interview

25 Questions and Answers by Tom Dushaj
| Tom Dushaj is a business and technology executive and an accomplished author of the book "Resumes That Work".

Question 1 of 25

What do you think is the most important information security concern with most organizations right now?

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Norwin Technologies Corp. Interview Questions

  1. 1.

    What do you think is the most important information security concern with most organizations right now?

      One of the biggest concerns a company might have is securing their networks and systems to prevent a cyber attack. Given the increased level of security threats over the past five years, companies have made the protection of their data a very high priority. As this continues to become an area of importance for most companies, hiring managers will spend more time qualifying and interviewing candidates that share the same common goals and responsibility of protecting their IT security organization.

      This question helps the hiring manager identify the level of importance this question has to you, and if you share the same values and sentiment that the company possesses. More than likely the hiring manger will want to know what you think those concerns are, and where you place them on a list of priorities. You may want to start with some of the most important concerns that matter to you, then talk about what IT security concerns they may have, or their clients, and what's important in their eyes. Once you have an idea of where their thinking is, you can discuss the areas that you are responsible for overseeing in your current role.

      Tom's Answer #1

      "My role with past companies has been two-fold. One is to be an effective leader, to lead by example, to conduct myself in a professional manner, and to be an innovative technologist that solves problems. Being in an IT security environment, you learn two things very quickly, technology changes and evolves in a very short time, and threats are always on the rise. In my past role, I had the opportunity to try new methods and technologies to see which worked best. I found that not every technology works for every company. While assessing a number of technologies, I was able to select a few that fit our business model. This was based on a consensus from my team and management approval. As a result, this has decreased the number of attacks on our network over the past 2 years."

      Tom's Answer #2

      "I can say for certain that there are a number of concerns that most companies have when it comes to their IT security organization. As I led a team of IT security professionals, it became apparent to me that as a leader, I needed to show that I was able to take on difficult challenges, make difficult choices, and most importantly to implement a fail-safe IT security strategy that everyone could easily follow in order to secure all aspects of our IT security systems. A valuable lesson that I learned was to be prepared for surprises before they came up. As part of my fail-safe strategy, I put together a checklist of items that is followed in case of a power failure or cyber attack. I also built a backup system to combat the following occurrences:

      1. Power outage from weather
      2. Utility interruption from gas or electrical outage
      3. System crashes from network, systems or telecom provider
      4. Data breach or cyber attack, and how to apply contingency plan
      5. Unplanned disruptions."

  2. 2.

    What are your salary expectations?

      The best way to discuss your salary expectations is to use your current earnings as an example. Be open, and honest. Transparency is the best choice when salary based questions arise.

      Tom's Answer #1

      "Currently, I earn a base salary of $45,000 per year plus a potential 20% annual bonus. Last year my earnings were $52,000, and I would like to stay in the same range or slightly higher."

      Tom's Answer #2

      "I am currently making $100,000 per year with two bonus opportunities. I am looking for compensation that is aligned with the role and provides an opportunity for growth."

  3. 3.

    What are the benefits of automating IT operations through the use of Artificial Intelligence?

      The better you understand the concept of AIOps, the better you will be able to explain its benefits to the interviewer. Show that you are aware of the benefits related to automating IT operations through the use of AI.

      For a business, some of the benefits include:

      - Better use and disbursement of resources
      - Improved storage management
      - Elevated capacity planning capabilities
      - Ability to detect anomalies faster, and more accurately
      - Boosted threat detection and analysis

      Tom's Answer #1

      "Although there are many critics since AIOps is somewhat in its infancy, I believe that the benefits include the ability to detect better and analyze IT threats. Also, AI is allowing us to better plan around those potential threats, and detect anomalies faster."

      Tom's Answer #2

      "There are a plethora of benefits to automating IT operations using AI. What first comes to mind is the ability to streamline operations, and better use and disperse resources. The implementation of AIOps will also significantly help when it comes to timely threat detection."

  4. 4.

    Give me your opinion on Blockchain technology, and how do you think it will revolutionize cyber security?

      Ever since Blockchain was introduced to the market, security technologists have been busy trying to keep Blockchain transactions secure through distributed networks so people can use bitcoin or crypto-currency as a payment gateway. Hiring managers, especially in the finance/banking industries, are well aware of this technology, so when they ask this question, they are looking for your opinion on how it applies to cyber security. If you have experience working in an environment that uses Blockchain, showcase that experience in a way that makes you stand out from the crowd. For example, use a scenario (without giving away sensitive company information) where you used it, and how you were able to protect web servers and ID systems so the transactions were safe and secure. If you have limited knowledge in Blockchain, show your eagerness to learn the technology, and how your skills would apply in those situations.

      Tom's Answer #1

      "Anytime I see the introduction of a new technology or payment gateway, I take it upon myself to research that technology to see where it is relevant in the world of Cyber Security. When Blockchain came out, I did extensive research on where it might have vulnerabilities, and susceptible to attacks. According to my research, Blockchain has around for about a decade and was initially introduced to store and/or send crypto-currency like Bitcoin. Blockchains are distributed networks with millions of users all over the world. Since Blockchain uses cryptology, it's easier for businesses to authenticate devices and users without the need for a password. This definitely eliminates manual intervention in the process of authentication, thereby avoiding potential attacks."

      Tom's Answer #2

      "The way I view Blockchain revolutionizing Cyber Security is through decentralized storage, record keeping, and peer-to-peer sharing. Furthermore, Blockchain users will be able to store all their data on their network or computer if they choose to do so. Basically, a blockchain is a decentralized, digitized, public ledger of all cryptocurrency transactions known as Distributed Ledger Technology. One of the big reasons why I think blockchain is going to be an integral part of Cyber Security is (Distributed Denial of Service. In a nutshell, Blockchain transactions can be denied easily if the send-receive participants are impeded from sending transactions. Blockchains provide a non 'hackable' entrance point, thereby, provide more security when compared with database-driven transactional structures."

  5. 5.

    When have you had to change a major component of your project due to new information being presented?

      Being able to swivel the focus of your project is a necessary skill for your success in most careers. Talk to the interviewer about a time when a significant change occurred on a project. How did you handle the implementation of the new information?

      Tom's Answer #1

      "I had a large project last month that was nearly complete when the client called to say that the dimensions provided were incorrect. Because of this, our team had to re-do the entire proposal. It took us an additional four days of work but, in the end, the client was delighted with our work, and it resulted in new opportunities with them."

      Tom's Answer #2

      "Last year we saw new federal regulations come through which affected 80% of our ongoing projects. We had to adjust our plans quickly; however, we were able to deliver a timely product that met federal regulations."

  6. 6.

    Explain the difference between a black hat, white hat, and a grey hat hacker.

      In the world of data security, not all hackers are created equal. Endless conversations are happening online regarding hackers, and the critical part they play in our everyday lives. The argument often is, just because you know how to do something illegal, that does not mean you are doing that. Many professional hackers use their unique skills to benefit their government or community. Discuss with the interviewers the difference between these three types of hackers.

      Tom's Answer #1

      "I am aware that not all hackers are the same. Black hat hackers can write malware and know a lot when it comes to breaking into computer networks. White hat hackers are also considered ethical hackers. They may work as security specialists who know how to repair cyber vulnerabilities. Then, grey hat hackers are a mix of the two."

      Tom's Answer #2

      "From my understanding, white hats use their knowledge for good, helping to prevent hacks and closing security holes that could leave a company vulnerable. Black hats often use their knowledge for illegal activity such as writing and deploying malware. Grey hats are an amalgamation of the two."

  7. 7.

    Tell me about your experience in the field of IT services.

      It is critical that you study the job description before your interview. When the interviewer asks this question be sure to highlight the related experience that you bring.

      Tom's Answer #1

      "I bring all of the experience that you are looking for in filling this position. In addition to being an expert user in SAP, I also bring five years' experience in desk side support and as a bilingual IT support agent."

      Tom's Answer #2

      "I have eight years of industry experience with Company ABC and XYZ. Both experiences taught me a great deal about IT, and I am excited to continue my career in this industry with your organization."

  8. 8.

    How would you explain AIOps to someone who did not understand new technology?

      The better you understand a concept, the easier it is for you to explain it to someone who may not completely understand artificial intelligence or new technology. Show the interviewer that you can describe AIOps to someone who may be a layman.

      Tom's Answer #1

      "I prefer to describe these concepts using examples that someone may know from their personal life. For instance, many people have Siri on their phone or Amazon Alexa. So, if I needed to explain AIOps to a layman, I would say that it's like Alexa being applied to business operations, adding a more personal or 'human' touch to things such as IT processes."

      Tom's Answer #2

      "Often, when I talk about my line of work, my mother looks confused. I helped her to understand what AIOps is when I told her that it's like a business using Siri to help them make things run a lot easier. I would say that AI works well to take data, make meaning of it, and then support a company to make important decisions around that information. AI also helps take care of the tedious tasks that many employees do not want to do, helping a company to be more effective."

  9. 9.

    If you could give advice for on-time and on-budget data migration, what would you say?

      The interviewer would like to see that you have sound judgment, and strong enough knowledge of data migration, that you could advise someone junior to you, or a team less experienced. Discuss what you would say to someone needing help on a data migration project.

      Tom's Answer #1

      "If I were to give advice related to data migration, I would say always to have experienced people on-premise, versus performing tasks via an online support team. This way, any unforeseen hiccups can be addressed immediately, and you can readily rely on people who have strong knowledge in your framework. It's also critical that this team be led very well, and in a hands-on manner."

      Tom's Answer #2

      "Test, test, test, and when you think you are done testing, test some more. That would be my advice to someone about to approach a significant data migration project. Data cleansing is also a crucial step, so never skip that initial analysis. Lastly, it's critical that the team is led by a solid, hands-on leader who is an active participant through the entire migration."

  10. 10.

    Explain what the difference is between Data Mining and Data Analytics, and tell me how you have used both in your recent projects?

      Data Mining and Data Analytics go hand In hand in the world of big data. Data Mining is used to find patterns among large datasets, while Data Analytics is used to test hypothetical models on particular datasets. Over a period of time, you acquire skills that companies see as valuable to their organization. It's these skills that set you apart in the market. As you hone these skills over time, you become good at many different soft skills that accompany the technical skills. Here's where you can use a combination of these skills to articulate a compelling message that explains the differences between Data Mining and Data Analytics.

      A very important question that might come from an interviewer is how much data do you analyze, and how do you manage that data without risking a security breach. Large scale big data projects use tools like Hadoop as a repository for this data. The reason I mention it is the hiring manger might ask what repository you use to store it, and what your level of confidence using this tool is.

      Tom's Answer #1

      "Data Mining and Data Analytics data is compiled by a number of different sources throughout a company. This data comes into the organization in many different forms from different formats, platforms, media, etc. It comes in different shapes, sizes, and venues like social media, social activity reports, customer surveys, emails, weblogs, sensors and bots related to the Internet of Things. I take this data and put it in the correct silos of a data warehouse, then break it down into data points that have relevant and usable data that the business can understand and use it to make business decisions. I was responsible for a data mining project that needed data to calculate operational expenses within the marketing group. They needed to know what it cost the Marketing department to run lead generation campaigns, and what the customer acquisition costs were."

      Tom's Answer #2

      "To me, comparing and contrasting two things like Data Mining and Data Analytics is an exercise that I enjoy a lot. I'm very passionate about data in general. Let me give you an example of these two, and how I used them in my current and past projects. Let's examine the difference between the two, and my experience using both. The Data Analytics process goes into the following steps: Project Definition, Data Collection, Data Analysis, Statistical Analysis, Data Modeling, and Deployment. The Data Mining process is a little different. The steps are Problem Definition, Data Collection, Data Analysis, Statistical Analysis, Data Modeling, Verification and Validation, and Insights. Now for my experience: In a recent project, I collected data from our websites to look at patterns in user behavior and website traffic for all our pages. This data was helpful to the Search Engine Optimization team so they could focus on redeveloping pages that were getting inquires and orders."

  11. 11.

    Explain cognitive cyber-security.

      Cognitive cyber-security is an essential concept in the data security industry, and the interviewer would like to see the depth of your knowledge on the topic. How would you explain this concept to someone who was not familiar with your industry? Walk the interviewer through your understanding by explaining cognitive cyber-security in the simplest terms possible.

      Tom's Answer #1

      "Cognitive cyber-security is best explained as a form of security that understands, reasons, and learns, through the use of artificial intelligence, and human thought processes. It describes self-learning security systems, essentially."

      Tom's Answer #2

      "Artificial intelligence plays an integral part in how security systems protect against cyber-threats. Cognitive cyber-security is a method that applies AI technology, creating a system that learns from human thought processes, pattern recognition, and natural language processing."

  12. 12.

    Although you are not an experienced network administrator, you should be fluent in the terminology used in our industry. Can you explain to me the difference between symmetric and asymmetric encryption and the benefits of each one?

      This is a direct question meant to test your knowledge of network security management and determine if you are qualified to make recommendations to the customers of the firm you are interviewing with. You should answer this directly and succinctly.

      Tom's Answer #1

      "Sure, I'd be happy to. Symmetric encryption uses the same key at both ends of the packet transmission. The two processes involve encrypting and then decrypting the packet. Asymmetric encryption employs two different keys for the two processes. Symmetric encryption is faster but poses a bigger risk since the channel the packet is sent through is unencrypted."

      Tom's Answer #2

      "Symmetric and asymmetric encryption differ in terms of the keys used to encrypt the data packets. Symmetric encryption involves using a signal key to encrypt and decrypt the packet. This is faster but increases the risk of data loss due to the channel being unencrypted. Asymmetric encryption uses two keys' one to encrypt the packet and a different one to decrypt it. This is a more secure method to transmit data, but the additional key slows the process down. Symmetric encryption is best for low-risk, low-latency applications while asymmetric is best for more secure situations."

  13. 13.

    What are the responsibilities of a data migration sponsor?

      Data migration sponsors are known to underestimate the depth of a data migration project often. The interviewer would like to see that you understand the responsibilities that a sponsor should have, giving you the ability to prepare and train if needed.

      To help a data migration project move smoothly, a sponsor should:

      - Assess the data, to see which approach is best
      - Have an accurate idea of scheduling, costs, and risks
      - Possess a full understanding of the contract, and their obligations
      - Have a project management group involved through the process
      - Make a communication plan for all stakeholders to follow

      Tom's Answer #1

      "A data migration sponsor should be responsible for their full understanding of the project, as well as ensuring that clear communication is kept for the sake of all stakeholders. I also believe it's important that the sponsor assess the data initially, allowing them to have an accurate assessment of scheduling, costs, and potential risks related to the migration."

      Tom's Answer #2

      "A data migration sponsor has many responsibilities, most of which include laying the proper groundwork before the project begins, and also making a communication plan for everyone to follow. From my experience, the most seamless migrations also occur when the sponsor has a project management group involved in the process, from top to bottom."

  14. 14.

    What are the three types of Machine Learning algorithms?

      Show the interviewer that you know the basics of machine learning, and its algorithms. There are three primary categories of machine learning algorithms:

      - Supervised Learning
      - Unsupervised Learning
      - Reinforcement Learning

      Within these three, there are subtypes of algorithms which include:

      - Linear Regression
      - Logistic Regression
      - Decision Tree
      - SVM
      - Naive Bayes
      - kNN
      - K-Means
      - Random Forest

      Discuss with the interviewer the types of machine learning algorithms you are familiar with.

      Tom's Answer #1

      "I am aware that there are three main types of machine learning algorithms, and am most familiar with Reinforcement Learning, and the Markov Decision Process. This method is where the machine is exposed to an environment where it then is trained to make specific decisions, using trial and error. The findings can then be used to make accurate business decisions."

      Tom's Answer #2

      "K-means is the algorithm which I am most familiar, and it falls under the Unsupervised Learning category. From what I know, it is frequently used for clustering information across a variety of groups."

  15. 15.

    As I understand it, the network is the most vulnerable part of a company's IT infrastructure. What is your opinion of this and how would you define the threat and risk to a company in terms of network security?

      This is a 'set the table' question which provides the interviewer with an overview of your knowledge of and perspective on network security.

      Tom's Answer #1

      "The network infrastructure is the most vulnerable part of the IT system because it is the easiest part to access. Since all the company's data is transmitted via the network, hackers focus on this to get the data for malevolent uses. This is the threat to the system. The risk is the company's responsibility to secure their users' and customers' information or be subject to fines, injunctions or even shut down. Measures need to be taken to minimize both the threats and the risks related to network security. I am well versed in these and can expound on them if you would like me to."

      Tom's Answer #2

      "I agree with you that the greatest threat to a company's IT infrastructure is the network. Hackers target the network because it is the easiest part of the system to access and because all the data is transmitted over the network. It's the data that hackers want and can cause the most disruption with. The risk to the company if the data is compromised is the loss of business, fines and injunctions and the possibility of being shut down. While the threat associated with network security will always remain, the risk can be minimized through prudent network security practices and procedures."

  16. 16.

    Your customer wants you to explain the benefits of the Big Data model you developed, how do you communicate the insights they can use for their business?

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  17. 17.

    What is a false positive and false negative alert in the case of Intrusion Detection Systems?

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  18. 18.

    What is the highest ROI percentage you have delivered to a client?

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  19. 19.

    Since you are interviewing for a position in which you will make recommendations to customers about protecting their company's network, I'm curious about what you do to protect your own network at home.

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  20. 20.

    Tell me something about yourself that I wouldn't know from reading your resume.

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  21. 21.

    There are different levels of data classification, how are they structured, and why are they required?

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  22. 22.

    How do you make tough decisions knowing they will affect your entire team?

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  23. 23.

    What are the benefits of leasing a private data center vs. building one from scratch?

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  24. 24.

    What part of this career brings you the most stress?

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  25. 25.

    How do you evaluate success among your team members?

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