Women In Security. PHOTO: Cybercrime Magazine

A Dozen Females Fighting Cybercrime At CrowdStrike

A special Cybercrime Radio series

Amanda Glassner

Northport, N.Y. – Mar. 15, 2021

Talk is cheap when it comes to promoting women in cybersecurity. CrowdStrike puts its money where its mouth is and continuously hires female cyber fighters, engineers, consultants, and marketers.

Women make up 20 percent of the global cybersecurity workforce, according to Cybersecurity Ventures. The male-dominated field was previously known for gatekeeping and creating an exclusive labor pool. With such barriers, it’s no wonder many women lost (or never had) interest.

A cybersecurity talent shortage combined with a strong push for diversity and inclusion is redefining what an acceptable applicant looks like. The jobs have “women” written all over them.

Hillarie McClure, multimedia director at Cybercrime Magazine and host at Cybercrime Radio, spoke to a dozen of CrowdStrike’s women in cybersecurity — about how they broke barriers, why working in this rewarding industry matters, and what others can do to get involved.

Cybercrime Radio: Katie Blankenship, Global Threat Analysis Manager at CrowdStrike

U.S. Army Combat Veteran and Cybersecurity Thought Leader

CrowdStrike Women In Cybersecurity Series


Who’s who stopping breaches:

  • Amanda Adams, Senior Director of European Alliances. If you knew Adams personally, you would wonder how she ever ended up in cybersecurity. But her marketing background didn’t go to waste — Adams handles meetings both with external European companies and her internal team. She’s most passionate about protecting small businesses in wake of the COVID-19 financial crisis. Listen
  • Brooke Andrist, Manager of Sales Engineering. Formerly working in music entertainment, Andrist had to leverage her house to start her cybersecurity career. Now with over a decade of experience in the industry, she bridges the gap between tech-minded people and everyone else by leading a team of 12 sales professionals to success. Listen
  • Jennifer Ayers, (former) Vice President of Overwatch and Security Response. Got started in security after serving in the military, and two decades later, she’s even more dedicated to catching cybercriminals. As of March 2021, Ayers has moved on to a new role as Chief Operating Officer for DNSFilter. Listen
  • Katie Blankenship, Global Threat Analysis Manager. U.S. Army combat veteran with a background in supporting cyber intelligence programs. Now a mother of two, Blankenship identifies adversary activity and behavioral trends all in the name of “[stopping] the bad guys.” Listen
  • Aparna Chaudhari, Senior Software Engineer. A passionate scientist turned tech whiz. Chaudhari found meaning in her work through developing tools to assure internet users’ safety. As the mother to a 17-year-old son, she is especially motivated to protect teenagers on the web. Listen
  • Miriam Fowler, Team Lead OverWatch. Building off a background in security engineering, Fowler makes and reinforces trust between businesses and individuals all the while ensuring productive communication and fixing what is broken. Listen
  • Melissa Horvath, Director of Program Management. Can an FBI agent find cyber success? Horvath — walking proof that the answer is yes — has built a career on protecting others. Today, her mission is to shield good people from the dark side of technology. Listen
  • Ewa Konkolska, Security Analyst. Among the 18 percent of UK women in cybersecurity, she protects data from dangerous adversaries with the help of a worldwide team. Konkolska is just as passionate about stopping breaches as she is becoming a better person every day — tasks that, luckily for her, go hand-in-hand. Listen
  • Aspen Lindblom, Threat Analyst. Her LinkedIn bio says “Data is beautiful,” but she knows more than anyone how dangerous it can be. Bitten by the cybersecurity bug after getting started in IT, Lindblom writes code and secures data to protect today’s children from the cybersphere’s many dangers. Listen
  • Sayako Quinlain, Professional Services Consultant. A product of her environment, Quinlan got into cybersecurity after growing up in Silicon Valley. The self-proclaimed extrovert fell in love with solving e-crime and knocking out ransomware as quickly as she disproved the idea that tech is only for introverts. Listen
  • Elly Searle, Principal Content Strategist. Specialist in user-experience (UX) writing, content strategy, project management, and establishing scope and clarity. Searle doesn’t “dumb down” tech jargon; instead, she opens it up for everyone to understand. Her mission is to make cybersecurity one less headache for society. Listen
  • Crystal Starks, Senior User-Experience Designer. A perfect example of why it’s never too late to land a career in tech — only after getting married and having three children did Starks go back to school for a computer science degree. Her favorite part of working in cyber? Continuing to learn. Listen

The takeaway from these ladies and their interesting stories is that there’s room for you — if you’re a girl or woman thinking about a career in cybersecurity.

Listen to the full podcast series here.

Amanda Glassner is a staff writer and reporter at Cybercrime Magazine.

Go here to read all of my blogs and articles covering cybersecurity. Go here to send me story tips, feedback and suggestions.