Claudia Paisley, information security analyst
What is your background?
I’m coming off of active-duty military where I operated a command-and-control system for 17 years. During that time, I had an array of unique experiences in the Air Force from the beaches of Pensacola, FL, where I was first stationed for nearly 11 years, to the desert sands of Iraq supporting Operation Iraqi Freedom/New Dawn. Yes, it is was hot as you may think – the average high in the summer was 115 degrees. I even got to spend two years in South Korea, and it was amazing! In 2017, I landed here in Oklahoma where I received my first introduction to cybersecurity and was trained as a defensive cyber operator for tactical units in the Air Force. From there, I took off knowing I wanted to transition from my military job doing tactical operations into the exciting world of cybersecurity and hacking (ethically, I promise).
Tell me how you first got involved at UCO.
My first involvement with UCO was when I was transitioning out of the military back into civilian life. I was ready to dive full-time into a cybersecurity position and apply my knowledge and training in a civilian setting and get a taste of what we like to call “the other side” in the military. Joining the security team here at UCO has been one of the most rewarding experiences I have ever had. I’m surrounded by a great IT team!
What would you say your strongest beliefs are about your contribution to the university?
As a security analyst, I want to approach making cybersecurity awareness more the norm and not some complicated subject that scares people away. We are in the digital age with amazing tech, so let’s use it to its full potential, but safely. This can mean a lot of things from good password hygiene to “please don’t click on that phishing email link.” There can be a balance between productivity and security without it having to be gloom and doom all the time (or super boring!).
What do you do when you are not working?
When I’m not working I spend my time volunteering with the Pet Food Pantry of Oklahoma bagging and delivering pet food to our core clients who consist of the elderly, veterans and homeless. When I’m not doing that, I’m usually reading a book on my Kindle app. Right now, I’m reading “The Authenticity Project” by Clare Pooley and “The Monk Who Sold His Ferrari” by Robin Sharma. I also love to listen to cyber podcasts of which two of my favorites are Cyberwire Daily and Darknet Diaries. I have my two dogs and three cats (it was never my intention to have 5 animals, but here I am) to keep me company and entertained during my downtime.