Updating Results

Commonwealth Superannuation Corporation (CSC)

  • 100 - 500 employees

Sophia Barbour

I love all the opportunities to learn. Throughout my very short four months in my Cyber rotation, I have been able to attend all kinds of training

What's your job about?

The Commonwealth Superannuation Corporation (CSC) looks after the superannuation of its members; employees of the Australian Public Service and Defence Force. I am a graduate in the graduate program at CSC and am currently in my second rotation in Cyber Security, in which my team works to protect CSC’s financial and information assets.

A typical week for me involves starting the day by checking my emails to see if any jobs have been assigned to me. These jobs can look like anything from whitelisting (sort of like unblocking) websites, scanning malicious documents, or investigating and dealing with phishing emails. Being new to the role – and the world of cyber security – one of my main responsibilities is to create security awareness in our staff. I do this by simplifying the (sometimes overly) technical content into educational training modules, articles or graphics. I also spend my time assisting my team with operational tasks such as vulnerability testing or threat profiling. At the moment I am helping out with a major refresh of our IT Technology policies, which involves me performing gap analyses, talking to different business teams and implementing a new template!

What's your background?

I grew up in Sydney and graduated high school in 2015. I intended to stay in Sydney to study at UNSW, but that all changed when I came down to Canberra to visit some friends during a college weekend. I ended up loving the campus and the college life so much that I decided to move down to attend ANU starting from that very next semester! I had various part-time jobs during my time at uni, the longest being a Medical Receptionist/Administrative Assistant in a plastic surgeon’s office (not for the faint-hearted – we once had a guy whose arm needed reattaching after getting stuck in machinery.)

In CSC’s graduate program we get the opportunity to choose which many areas of the business we rotate through (think Brand and Marketing, Investments, Risk, Legal, Human Resources… the list is endless!). Before starting my current Cyber Security rotation, I first was in our Employer Services team (which essentially involved helping other Australian Government departments, i.e. the employers of our members). While I had a lot of fun, I always had an interest in Security so when I heard about the Cyber team I thought why not try something a little different!

Could someone with a different background do your job?

Yes, definitely! I certainly do not have a background in IT, so that’s saying something. The most important thing for this role (and any role, really) is being open to trying anything. As long as you’re willing to give everything a go, you’d be just fine! (This is probably the best thing about the CSC Graduate Program, nothing is off-limits and everyone is more than happy to show you anything.)

What's the coolest thing about your job?

I love all the opportunities to learn. Throughout my very short four months in my Cyber rotation, I have been able to attend all kinds of training – the most interesting being a two-day course where we got to actually hack a company!

What are the limitations of your job?

My team operates interstate, so I really miss the face-to-face interactions! It’s always easier to go up to someone in person when you have a question rather than trying to explain in an email. If anything, it has just made me appreciate the colleagues I get to see more regularly (like the other grads!)

3 pieces of advice for yourself when you were a student...

  1. Consider going to university or applying for a job in another city! Moving states forced me to be independent and pushed me out of my comfort zone in terms of making a whole new group of friends. I now live my life in Canberra and plan on staying here for the foreseeable future.
  2. Don’t worry if you fail an exam or an assignment – it happens! You’ll find by the end of your degree you know exactly how to write the perfect university essay or how many hours you need to memorise those STAT formulas, practise makes perfect.
  3. Back yourself! Being surrounded by people seemingly more intelligent, more dedicated. More deserving is daunting. Just remember that you also got into that job, that degree, that program, that class – you belong there as well!