#CyberFest Sunderland: Cyber Security Needs You!

Cyber security needs all talents! Technical or not, this free event hosted by Sunderland University and the Institute of Coding is for you. Not only will there be presentations from leading cyber security experts on the global threat of cyber security, there will be breakout streams to follow.

The technical stream will include demonstration sessions from technicians both in work and at college, while the non-technical stream will discuss what skills employers are looking for from their future cyber security teams.


Freha Arshad – Senior Manager, Accenture Security

Freha is part of the leadership team in Accenture Security’s Health & Public Service Practice. She has extensive experience of working with clients in a range of domains from the public sector to financial services. Freha has led a number of large scale security transformation projects across the government & the public sector focussing on the following areas; security strategy, risk management, data privacy, security operating model and business continuity. In these roles Freha has interacted and advised C-Suite stakeholders, focussing how security challenges can be translated into business benefits. Her current focus areas include security strategy and operating model creation and implementation at a national level. Freha also regularly provides SME support to clients understanding how the changing regulatory landscape impacts their security strategies and transformation programmes. Freha was listed in Management Today’s 2020 35 under 35



Kimberley Hendry – Co Founder of North East Ladies Hacking Society

Kimberley is a co-founder of the North East Ladies Hacking Society, a Masters student retraining in cyber security and an active advocate for diversity in tech.



Gareth Judd Cyber Prevent Officer, North East Regional Cyber Crime.

Gareth is a Police Officer working for the Cyber Crime Prevent team in the North East Regional Special Operations Unit (NERSOU) which covers three forces in the North East of England including the large cities of Newcastle-upon-Tyne and Sunderland. Gareth has been a Police Officer for over 10 years working mainly in Sunderland as a Specially Trained Officer trained in the use of Taser and Method of Entry techniques. Gareth excells in his working with young individuals who are showing early signs of becoming involved in Cyber Crime and leading them down more positive pathways to a brighter future. Gareth is interested in sports such as Cycling, Golf and Snowboarding. He is also interested in Classic American Muscle cars owning his own 1967 Ford Mustang.


Paul Maddison Cyber Prevent Officer, North East Regional Cyber Crime

Paul is a Police Officer working for the Cyber Crime Prevent team in the North East Regional Special Operations Unit (NERSOU) which covers three forces in the North East of England including the large cities of Newcastle-upon-Tyne and Sunderland. Paul has over 20 years experience in the Military and Police, having been decorated for his service in Kuwait as part of Air Operations Iraq.  As well as his current role in the police Paul has served in response units, neighbourhood police teams, public order teams and organised crime units. Paul is committed to identifying individuals on the cusp of cybercrime, and once identified, Paul seeks to deter and divert them towards more positive pathways. Away from policing Paul is a great fan of cinema and an avid supporter of Sunderland Association Football Club.


Ben Kenyon – Director, North Cyber Security

Ben has worked in digital media for over 15 years and ran his own development agency for over 10. Ben heads up the tech due diligence team for North Cyber Security as well as managing penetration testing projects. North Cyber Security has delivered technical due diligence audits and cyber security solutions to both the public and private sectors, from small commercial businesses to large PLCs.



Paul Jenkins – Penetration Tester, North Cyber Security

Paul is an experienced web application penetration tester coming from a development and DevOps background. He is the lead penetration tester for North Cyber Security and has been in the industry for 10 years.




Ross Cooney – Chief Technology Officer, iamproperty

Ross Cooney is the CTO of iamproperty, a company providing auction, compliance and conveyancing services to estate agents nationwide. For over 20 years he has helped businesses design and build complex systems such as share trading protocols, vehicle telematics and insurance trading platforms. Cyber Security has to be a fundamental design pillar for such systems. More recently Ross has been involved with helping a number of start-up companies to scale. This is a unique challenge where the company already has a released product with active customer traction. The challenge scaling such a product needs to start with a fundamental teardown of the product and its entire tech stack. The Cyber Security risk is immense as startups often lose sight of fundamental design principles when they are building a product…often through iteration and involving rapid pivots.


Paul Newton – Senior Consultant, Nigel Wright Recruitment

Paul is a Senior Consultant with Nigel Wright specialising in handling IT assignments for public and private sector clients across the North East. Typical projects include identifying candidates for IT managerial positions including generalists, Technical Infrastructure, Service Delivery, Project Management as well as Information Security roles. Paul is a member of the North East Chapter of Information Security Professionals body (ISC)2 where he has presented and has also organised and chaired regular meetings of the Nigel Wright NE IT Managers’ forum that provides opportunities for local IT Managers to debate topical issues, such as cyber security.



Dominic ButtonPhD Researcher and an Academic Tutor in Cyber security, University of Sunderland

Dominic Button is a PhD Researcher and an Academic Tutor in Cyber security at the University of Sunderland. Dominic’s research focuses on the use of threat intelligence platforms as a means to combat cyber-crime. He is particularly interested in how such platforms might serve the needs of SMEs; helping them to become more resilient to cyber threats. Dominic is an experienced software developer and holds a 1st class honours degree in Computer Systems Engineering. For his post graduate degree, Dominic specialised in Cyber security and holds an MSc in Cybersecurity which was awarded with distinction.



Richard Wallwork – Security Compliance Manager, Sage Global Services

Richard is the Security Compliance Manager at Sage Global Services Limited. He has 25 years experience working in technology, with the last 15 years orientated toward Information Security and Compliance. His mantra is to read, listen and learn from others, while he is not afraid to make mistakes. He enjoys the challenge of evolving and increasing governance framework and compliance, enabling the delivery of the best quality service.


Phil Irving – Senior Lecturer, University of Sunderland

Phil is a Senior Lecturer at the University of Sunderland. Specialising in Networking, Security and Cyber Security. Phil’s networking and security career began in the financial sector before moving into teaching full time in 1994. Phil holds an MSc, degree and many professional certifications in the field. He has also published 3 books on networking, acted as technical consultant to Edexcel on the Computer Networking syllabus and is currently external examiner at Glasgow Caledonian University (GCU) on MSc networking and cyber security programmes.


Colin Gray – Senior Lecturer in Computer Forensics, Sunderland University

Throughout the past 20 years, I have been involved with the reconstruction and forensic analysis of digital evidence including: mobile phones, computer hard drives, flash drives, floppy disks, digital cameras, CDs and DVDs. I have produced electronic audit trails, recreation of computer use, recreation of print jobs, e-mails, internet history, even if media has been formatted, deleted or damaged.


Adam Boukraa Graduate Cyber Security Specialist (Compliance) at Sage.

Previously Support Analyst with a demonstrated history of working in the computer software industry. Skilled in PHP, Databases, HTML, C#, and Troubleshooting.



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