Dean Parsons

Cybersecurity Leader, ISO, Industrial Control System Defender, and Speaker - Dean continues his passion for cybersecurity with goals of continuous education and giving back to the community. His enthusiasm in the field started at an early age writing educational hacking tools on his custom compiled versions of Linux. His project portfolio includes such tools as password crackers written in Python, host-based intrusion detection systems (IDS), network sniffing tools, intelligent port scanners, kernel modules and exploits for Linux written in C. 

Dean funded his studies at Memorial University of Newfoundland by working as a security consultant doing Linux hardening, writing networking applications, performing ethical hacks and vulnerability assessments. Also during that time he mentored and taught programming to high school students that would go on to compete in programming competitions. After earning a Bachelor's degree in Computer Science he held various security and cyber defense positions in software companies and in one of Canada's largest Telecommunications providers. He spent 10 years leading security and incident response initiatives in Unix, Linux and Windows environments. For the last 6 years he's been managing a security operations team and is the ISO for Critical Infrastructure in the Utility and Energy sector in Canada. 

An active member of the security community, Dean is dedicated to coaching others. His speaking engagements are international presenting at high profile conferences including the SANS ICS Summit on all things ICS. Dean has a natural way of engaging his audience, taking every opportunity to encourage others. While working at a high-level most of the time, Dean maintains his technical skills by paying close attention to the 'devil in the details' when overseeing cyber incident response in an IT and OT environment. In the run of a day it's common for Dean to be working at the packet or policy level. 

Qualifications Summary: 

  • GIAC Response and Industrial Defense (GRID) 
  • GIAC Certified Intrusion Analyst (GCIA) 
  • GIAC Security Leadership (GSLC) 
  • Bachelor Major Computer Science, Memorial University of Newfoundland 
  • Certified Information Systems Security Professional (CISSP) 
  • Is a member of the SANS/GIAC Advisory Board 

Get to know Dean Parsons: 

When Dean is not in ICS Active Cyber Defense mode you can find him exploring the coast of Newfoundland on his jet ski, playing piano or riding motorcycles, even in intense Newfoundland winters. An accomplished motorcycle instructor and rider, he published some adventures in his travel book "The Evergreen Rider - Newfoundland By Motorcycle. Through All Seasons, All Weather" 

Favourite quote: "Do. Or do not. There is no try." - Yoda

Here is what students say about Dean Parsons:

"Dean has been my best instructor. He did a great job and I feel I have gotten so much value out of his class that I am extremely confident I will pass the GRID on my first try." - Scott Elmer, DTNA

'Loved Dean's enthusiasm and passion for the subject matter." - Chris Lada, Exelon

"Instructor is a fantastic speaker with exactly the right amount of energy." - Brian Boosz, WA ANG