Job Title: Analyst
Education: BA in Philosophy and in Psychology, Western Washington University
Previous Experience: I was a telephone operator while in college.
Job Tasks: The company is a wireless telecommunications company, but I do nothing specifically related to wireless telephony. I do work related to computer security, but I am not in the formal security organization.
I keep antivirus software up-to-date. If someone encounters a virus, I try to determine how that happened. Frequently, I'll find undetected virus software by looking where detected virus software was found. Undetected virus software gets forwarded to antivirus software vendors. These samples improve antivirus software for everyone around the world.
With information about where viruses come from, you can find patterns. You use this patterns to predict where viruses can be expected to be found, and block access to those locations.
You might think I ask users what they had been doing. Actually, no. That's not particularly helpful when determining what actually happened. Asking users also keeps them from doing their job. It is more productive to use the information at hand to reconstruct the sequence of events that must have occurred.
I keep software up-to-date with security patches.
I monitor for locations that are missing security patches and get them corrected.
I test applications for security problems that could be exploited by hackers or virus writers. I then work with application developers to modify their software to avoid these problems.
I create my own job. I fill in the gaps; I take on the tasks that no one else will do but are generally agreed to be necessary. I've changed my job that way for thirty-one years now; always something involving computers, taking on some tasks and letting other tasks go.
Best and Worst Parts of the Job: Best parts:
I'm doing work that makes a difference, work that is socially responsible. I'm helping keep mothers and children safe, keeping people that I'll never meet safe.
I find out that I can do things I wasn't aware I could do. I wasn't aware I could troubleshoot a web site until I did it.
I'm asked questions about subjects I shouldn't be expected to know anything about. But by taking a question, rephrasing it, and re-asking the question, I find that the person who asked can usually provide enough information to answer it themselves. A well-asked question can usually provide an answer quickly.
Information collecting can be tedious. You can start making mistakes. Organize how you can get the work done in a way that you can stop and switch to something else without losing your place.
1. Liberal arts teaches critical thinking.
2. People with computer backgrounds can't look beyond the computer.
3. Solve problems.
5. Be supportive.
6. Be someone people can picture working with.
7. Listen, but don't accept that what a person says is what they want to say. Take their words and turn them around, ask if that's what they meant. It gives them the impression that you understand, but you're really just listening. Eventually they'll correct themselves and you reach an understanding. Reach an agreement about what the problem is first.
Additional Thoughts: I still don't know what I want to be when I grow up. "When I grow up" ... when's that supposed to be? Be helpful now, not some "grownup" day.
These schools offer particularly quick info upon request, and we have written detailed profiles for each (click school names to see the profiles).
Request info from multiple schools, by clicking the Request Info links.
As a student at South University, Online Programs you will receive the same quality instruction, variety of learning options and level of service found at the campus locations.
CSU Global Campus - Information Technology
Liberty University provides a world-class education with a solid Christian foundation, equipping men and women with the values, knowledge, and skills essential for success in every aspect of life.
Syracuse University’s School of Information Studies (iSchool) - The Original Information School - is proud of its position as a leader in the field.
Established in 1901, the College of Engineering and Computer Science has built a vibrant community of leaders with a reputation for responsiveness in meeting regional, national, and global needs.
Study online with University of Maryland at College Park.
ABCO Technology is an accredited computer training academy that offers diploma programs for individual students, professionals and companies to learn different areas of Information technology and seek gainful employment.
Unitek College™ is a privately held vocational school dedicated to helping you gain the skills needed to advance your career or begin a brand new career.
See What’s Possible When You Earn a Degree at Florida Tech 100% Online
The inside stories from people actually working in the field.
Click a story title to show the story, and click the title again to hide it.
Career Stories are concise, real-world career overviews written by people relating their personal career experiences and wisdom. They provide invaluable insights and mentoring advice to students and career changers.
Most stories include:
Please also see our detailed information about Computer Systems Analysts, including: