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Mladen´s career tip: Turn your passion into a job

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Mladen Prekrat, Cyber Security Project Manager working in Croatia, says you definitely have to be a bit of a freak to love everything about cyber security, new technologies and gadgets. As a teenager he already made modification on his walkie-talkie to be sure that only friends with such a modification could listen to him. Thanks to his unstoppable willingness to learn and leaders who supported him on the way, he was able to turn his passion into an expert role

Cyber and information security is a big field. How can we imagine your daily job?

Mladen: My job is not necessarily exciting as is in the hacker movies like the one in “Mr. Robot”. As a security advisor I'm supporting privacy and security assessment process. I'm also responding on potential cyber security threats, to protect the company as an incident response lead (CERT) and I'm coordinating the security committee, a security body responsible for applying and monitoring security rules.

As an ambassador of the security awareness program, I also take part in our internal security communities and support knowledge sharing within the group. My main task is to secure the alignment between Telekom’s security priorities, the local security program and our business goals.

What do you love about your job in the cyber security area?

Mladen: I work in a very dynamic environment which makes my job very exciting. I am often involved in project development or new system implementations which include new technologies or various security concepts. I help the teams understand these concepts by giving real examples and by explaining our security rules and standards.

How did you become a security expert?

Mladen: I have been part of Hrvatski Telekom since it was founded. I started in sales and marketing department but was interested in IT topics as well. When I was involved in an IT project for the first time my leader recognized my potential and encouraged me to switch to our IT department. I was able to attend various cyber security trainings which allowed me to take part of the continuous professional education program. I’m very glad that I was enabled to grow in this field because nowadays cyber security certification is crucial for the business success.

What are your tips & tricks to develop, grow and stay ahead of the curve?

Mladen: We have access to best online learning platforms and every employee interested in self-development can use it. As I am very curious, I am always eager to learn, mostly in the field of cyber and information security. High level of motivation for consuming learning opportunities is a crucial component of self-development process, this is a way for success.