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Within VERT, we are rapidly approaching the release of our 1000th ASPL package. For those unfamiliar with the term “ASPL Package”, we are fast approaching the 1000th time that we delivered vulnerability content to customers. There’s an entire blog post planned around that in a few weeks as it is quite the milestone and accomplishment for the team, and I couldn’t be prouder of all the people who’ve helped to make this happen over the years.

Today, however, I wanted to talk about something else. I want to talk about the person who gave us VERT, the team that released all of those content updates. Mike Murray, the person who gave me my start in cybersecurity, passed away last week. I’m sure a lot of people are dealing with this loss and trying to find understanding in it all, I know I am. I didn’t work with Mike for that long, as he left nCircle shortly after he hired me, but we kept in touch over the years. For the first 5 years of my career, I considered him a mentor. He introduced me to the Security Bloggers Network, provided career and resume advice, and was a friend.

To this day, I still remember the interview training he gave and his advice around mirroring the person interviewing you. I share it with other people all the time and tell them where that advice came from. This weekend, I looked at the old emails I had exchanged with him. e-Cards, resume advice, discussions on security issues. No matter the email, Mike always replied.

We didn’t see each other often or talk nearly as much as I wish we had, but whenever the opportunity presented, he was available for a quick chat. Given the past few years, I’m glad I was able to chat with him, if only for a few minutes, at SecTor 2021. In the past, whenever we met up, if he was introducing me to someone, he always told the same story. He talked about when we first met at my interview at nCircle back in February 2006 and how he knew he was hiring me just from the story of how I showed up to the interview. I was always filled with pride to hear him tell that story and I always looked forward to catching up.

Sadly, we’ll never have the opportunity to catch up again. There are a lot of people out here who are feeling what I’m feeling. Mike touched a lot of people across our industry. He was a mentor to many of us and someone who really changed the game when it came to the vendor space. I hope we can all take solace in the fact that we’re facing this loss together… that we’ll toast him at every con this year and at every meet-up that happens. It won’t bring him back and it won’t take away the pain that we’re all feeling, but it is a way to have him there with us, with that smile that was always on his face no matter what was going on.

Whether we are nCircle, Tripwire, Tripwire – a Belden company, or now, Tripwire by HelpSystems, the role that Mike played in creating the team that exists today has not been forgotten and it never will be. We’ll always owe him a debt.

Thank you for everything Mike. We’ll miss you.

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