Ops 401: Cybersecurity Engineering



Ready to kickstart your exciting career in cyber ops? In this intensive course, delve into critical cyber processes like risk assessment, data encryption, network security, threat modeling, code analysis, vulnerability scanning, and incident response. Gain valuable ethical hacker skills in penetration testing, and show off your awesome new abilities in two resume-enhancing projects!

Designed to prepare you for today’s most in-demand security skills, this hands-on course emphasizes practical cyber operations including both offensive and defensive roles. Students will gain cutting-edge cyber ops skills by analyzing and exploiting systems vulnerabilities, implementing defenses against common threats, and using cyber toolkits such as Kali Linux and Metasploit. Vulnerability scanning tools such as Nessus are utilized, as well as security monitoring tools such as Splunk.

This course includes a career coaching curriculum to get you ready for your job search, plus job search assistance after graduation. The course totals 400 hours, including lectures, lab, coworking, and collaborative projects.

Certification Alignment

This course will substantially prepare you for achieving the learning objectives of CompTIA Security+ certification. This course covers significant aspects of all six domains required for Security+.

  • 1.0 Threats, Attacks, and Vulnerabilities
  • 2.0 Technologies and Tools
  • 3.0 Architecture and Design
  • 4.0 Identity and Access Management
  • 5.0 Risk management
  • 6.0 Cryptography and PKI


At the end of this course, you will be able to land an entry-level Cybersecurity Analyst or Operations Technician with skills to:

  • Apply the NIST risk management framework (RMF) to risk assessment scenarios
  • Document risk mitigations and perform security compliance audits
  • Take a security project all the way from conceptual requirements to technical implementation
  • Apply modern cryptographic principles to protect data at rest and in transit
  • Use data loss prevention (DLP) tools
  • Perform threat analysis and threat modeling using various tools such as STRIDE, cyber kill-chain, and MITRE ATT&CK
  • Explore DevOps, secure coding, and malware analysis
  • Administer anti-malware systems and various security tools
  • Analyze IT systems security with vulnerability scanning
  • Perform a complete penetration test lifecycle
  • Configure an intrusion detection/prevention system
  • Act as a CSIRT in performing incident response operations and SIEM event monitoring as part of threat detection operations
  • Deploy configure, and query a Splunk SIEM data collection system
  • Oversee network security efforts using VPN and firewall technologies


  • Required: Familiarity with algebra concepts
  • Ops 301: Networking and Systems Administration
  • Students with previous experience can test out of this requirement in their application. If you'd like to test straight into this course, please make sure you have experience with all of the topics listed on the Ops 201 and Ops 301 course pages.


Once you are accepted into the course, please complete the Ops 401 Prework.


Security Operations and Information Assurance

  • Business impact analysis
  • CIA triad
  • ISC2 ethics
  • Legal considerations in cybersecurity
  • Continuous monitoring with Nagios
  • NIST risk management framework (RMF)
  • Risk analysis, assessment, and reporting
  • Security compliance and auditing

Data Security

  • Data classification
  • Data loss prevention (DLP)
  • Data privacy concepts and regulation (GDPR, CCPA)
  • Encryption standards
  • Identity and access management (IAM)
  • Kali Linux Offensive Security Toolkit
  • Password security
  • Protecting data at rest and in transit
  • Public Key Infrastructure (PKI)
  • SSL, TLS

Network and Cloud Security

  • Cloud identity and access management
  • Cloud security in AWS, Azure
  • Data Loss Prevention(DLP)
  • Domain name system (DNS) security
  • Intrusion detection & prevention systems (IDS/IPS, SNORT)
  • Network access controls
  • Network authorization and authentication
  • Network data analysis with Wireshark
  • Network packet analysis
  • Secure network design
  • Virtual private cloud (VPC)

Threat Modeling and Analysis

  • Common cyber attack techniques and exploits
  • Cyber Kill-Chain
  • Threat Modeling

Malware and Application Security

  • Dynamic application security testing (DAST) with OWASP ZAP
  • Malware analysis
  • Malware reverse engineering
  • OWASP best practice software development
  • Python, Bash, Powershell task automation
  • Source code review

Vulnerability Analysis

  • Web app exploitation with Burp Suite
  • Nessus
  • Network and application vulnerability scans and assessments
  • OpenVAS
  • Scanner output handling, false positives, prioritization
  • Vulnerability risk rating
  • Vulnerability types and concepts
  • W3AF

Incident Response

  • CSIRT operations
  • Detection of systems change or anomalous activity
  • FedRAMP continuous monitoring (ConMon) framework
  • Incident response lifecycle
  • Indicators of compromise (IOC)
  • SIEM deployment and operation
  • SIEM log and event analysis
  • Splunk troubleshooting, data ingestion, query writing
  • Threat hunting techniques

Penetration Testing

  • Enumeration
  • Exploitation
  • Impact analysis
  • Investigation and intelligence collection
  • Legal considerations in pentest scoping
  • Nmap, metasploit, datasploit
  • Penetration test lifecycle
  • Planning
  • Scoping
  • Target profiling and evaluation

Career Transition Services

Changing careers is about more than learning a new skill. In tandem with your Ops education, you will receive powerful career-building strategic training so you can confidently start your job search as soon as (or even before!) you graduate.

Our Career Transition Services provide training, mentoring, leadership, and introductions to industry partners to help you become a more well-rounded software developer and a leader in your field. These services, which start in Ops 201 and continue after Ops 401 graduation, involve a series of events, workshops, and assignments that help you think holistically about your new career and take actionable steps towards success.

Learn More

Material Requirements

For all Ops courses beyond 101, you must come to class on the first day with:

  • A recent-model laptop (or desktop) computer
  • An Ops Lab Kit from Code Fellows, which contains tools of an IT pro, and a PC to use for labs (where you can uninstall/reinstall the operating system repeatedly).

Laptop Requirements

You are required to supply your own laptop that meets the below requirements. Chromebooks are not suitable for this course, since they are generally underpowered, and not configured for you to control the installed software. You are responsible for the upkeep and maintenance of your laptop throughout the course.

  • 64-bit Operating System, like macOS or Windows 10
  • Fully up to date, with the latest version of the operating system and all security updates installed
  • At least 100GB of free space on the hard drive
  • At least 16GB of RAM required. 32GB RAM strongly preferred
  • Free of viruses, and in general working order

Ops Lab Kit

By the first day of class, you will need to have received an Ops Lab Kit from Code Fellows. This means you are responsible for picking up the Lab Kit at a published time or arranging for it to be delivered to you before class starts.

Each kit contains:

  • A desktop tower PC computer intended for lab and data overwrite
  • Compatible peripherals
  • Two 32GB USB 3.0 flash drive
  • Sysadmin toolkits
  • Cat5e networking supplies
  • A wireless router for firmware modifications
  • And more!

Each kit costs $400, which will be billed to you with your course invoice.

Stacked Modules

Concepts in each of our courses are taught using stacked modules, where a new concept is introduced in each class session, building upon what came before it. This is a challenging style that requires persistence, practice, and collaboration, but allows more concepts to be introduced over the length of the course. This method helps students learn and retain more information in a short period of time. Learn more about stacked modules »

Homework Policy

In order to pass the class, students must attain at least 90% of available points.


Punctuality, participation in discussions, completion of assignments, and demonstration of professional courtesy to others are required, in accordance with our Code of Conduct. Attendance will be taken at the beginning of every class. Passing requires at least 90% attendance. Students should always contact the instructors ahead of time if they are unable to attend all or part of the published class/lab hours.

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