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You want a penetration testing job?

We take hiring pretty seriously and have a rigorous screening and background check process to find the “A Team.”  While most of the process is uneventful, some of the applicants give us a good chuckle.   Here is a list of some of our favorite candidates who didn’t make the grade:

  1. Taking the wrong path First line of cover letter & resume: “I am required to inform you that I have a felony conviction for illegal hacking.  My plea bargain requires me to include this in my resume and cover letter for the next ten years.”

  2. Computer related indiscretions? “During a drunken brawl I hit a guy in the face with a computer.” Describing this as computer related doesn’t give you Mitnick like hacker creed.

  3. I can’t believe they pressed charges” “Who would have thought I’d get in trouble for ebaying the stacks of equipment my old employer had laying around?”

  4. Good at research? After taking three days to email back our written questionnaire, we really loved this answer:  Describe your Penetration Testing experience and interests: “I am not really sure what penetration testing is, but am confident I would do a good job.” Ever heard of Google?

  5. Strategic career move? “I am trying to get into network security after three successful years as the founder and CEO of Happy Dog Pet Washing.”

  6. A bit presumptuous? “When you interview me I will bring you a signed copy of my latest security book.” It might have been worth doing the interview just to see how he would autograph an ebook.

  7. Bonus points for honesty? Primary reference: “My parole officer.”

  8. Timeliness – We once had a guy show up for an interview apologizing profusely for being 30 minutes late. We replied “don’t worry, your interview is not until tomorrow.” We still debate around the office if he was early or late.

Have some hiring stories to share?  Please post them in the comments.

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