Top Cybersecurity Podcasts for Beginners

Last Updated: April 19, 2021

For someone new, the world of cybersecurity can be confusing and overwhelming. There is a broad range of related subjects, and within each of those subjects, there can be deep specialisation. As a beginner, podcasts can be a great way to gently increase your understanding of the areas of infosec (information security) and 'cyber' which interest you.

There is a wide range of podcasts related to computer security available, and each has a slightly different format and focus. For example, there are podcasts that cover weekly news, industry updates, educational information, career guidance and the exciting history of modern cybersecurity. Podcasts are produced by all sorts of people, including journalists, vendors (companies that sell security-focused products and services), and industry experts looking to share their knowledge and the stories of others.

Podcasts have different styles: some are just a casual chat between friends whilst others are more focused and factual. If you are new to the industry or new to podcasts, it will take some experimentation to work out what you prefer - try a few different podcasts to start with and subscribe to the ones that best suit your needs. Try to be selective; if you're not careful, you will end up with hundreds of hours of un-listened episodes!

There are many places to find podcasts today, making it easy to find and subscribe to your favourites. Again, which one is best will come down to personal preference, but options include:

  • Apple Podcasts
  • Google Podcasts
  • Stitcher
  • Spotify
  • Pocket Casts

You can find links at the bottom of the page to all of the podcasts mentioned.

Malicious Life Podcast

The Malicious Life podcast is hosted by author Ran Levi and sponsored by Cybereason. Rather than looking at current affairs, Malicious Life 'unravels complex, dramatic historical events with interviews from people who were actually there'. If you are new to cybersecurity, this is an excellent podcast for learning about some of the history of what is a relatively new industry. Ran picks key events and topics and then interviews the right people to deliver gripping insights into areas of the internet that you never knew existed. The podcast focuses on the story rather than the technical details, so this is a great one for newcomers.

New Episodes: Fortnightly

Run Time: 45 minutes

Top Episodes: Gozi (Part 1 and Part 2), Operation Aurora (Part 1 and Part 2), The Stuxnet Virus (Part 1, Part 2, Part 3).

Risky Business

The Risky Business, or 'risky biz', podcast has been around since 2007 and is hosted by Patrick Gray. The show covers weekly infosec current affairs paired with a sponsor interview. Although it might feel like a lot for a beginner, it is good for keeping up with the latest news and views in the industry. Patrick is usually joined for the news by experienced security consultant Adam Boileau or other guests such as Alex Stamos (professor at Stanford and former Chief Security Officer at Facebook). They discuss the latest security news from vulnerabilities discovered to data breaches and more.

New Episodes: Weekly

Run Time: 60 minutes

Darknet Diaries

Somewhat similar to Malicious Life, Darknet Diaries covers some thrilling true stories of the dark side of the internet. Host Jack Rhysider interviews a range of charters about intriguing stories of hacking, espionage and cybercrime. There is no need to be a cyber expert to enjoy this podcast, so it is another good one for beginners and will introduce you to the broader cyber landscape.

New Episodes: Fortnightly

Run Time: 30 minutes - 60 minutes

Top Episodes: Operation Glowing Symphony, Cam the Carder, Samy.

SANS Blueprint

This podcast is sponsored by the SANS Institute and hosted by John Hubbard, a Security Operations Center (SOC) consultant and Certified SANS instructor and course author. The focus on learning makes it great if you are looking to begin a career in cybersecurity, especially if you want to get started in a cyber defence role such as a SOC analyst or incident responder.

Blueprint covers various cyber defence topics to help blue teamers keep up to date with tools, technology and security concepts, and interviews with industry experts.

New Episodes: Weekly

Run Time: 30 minutes - 60 minutes

Top Episodes: The Art of Blue Teaming; Playbook for Security Onion; The Blueteamer's Blueprint for Malware Triage.

Talos Takes

The 'Talos Takes' podcast is a topical show that digs into a different tool, threat or area of research each week. The show is hosted by researchers and analysts from Talos (Cisco's cyber threat intelligence group. It is a good place to start if you want to dive more into some technical topics.

New Episodes: Weekly

Run Time: 10 minutes

Top Episodes: #40 Lessons learned from our conversations with a ransomware operator; #34 Free and low-cost security tools; #24 LoLBins.

Hacker Valley Studio

Hacker Valley Studio (HVS) focuses on the people in cybersecurity. Hosts Ron Eddings and Chris Cochran interview a different guest on each episode and have covered a wide range of speakers so far. HVS is great for getting different perspectives and insights into different career paths, both on the technical and business sides of cyber. Therefore, if you are beginning your cybersecurity career, this podcast can be a great source of inspiration.

New Episodes: Weekly

Run Time: 20 minutes - 40 minutes

Top Episodes: Hacker Valley Red Finale - Marco Figueroa, Hacker Valley Red Episode 2 - Rachel Tobac, Finding Comfort in Being Uncomfortable with Paul Rivera.

CPRadio

If you want to dig into some technical topics, CPRadio can be an excellent place to start. The podcast is sponsored by CheckPoint Research and covers the latest threats uncovered by their Threat Intelligence Group analysts and researchers.

New Episodes: Monthly

Run Time: 30 minutes

Top Episodes: War on All Fronts - Rampant Kitten, Instagram - The Problem with Open-Source, Operation Tripoli.

Symantec Cyber Security Brief

This is another vendor podcast, this time from Symantec. The weekly podcast offers a concise, regular brief of the latest cybersecurity news stories. Hosted by researchers from the Symantec Threat Hunter Team, they also discuss the newest research from Symantec. The Symantec Cyber Security Brief is great for keeping up with cyber threat news even if you only have 20 minutes to listen per week.

New Episodes: Weekly

Run Time: 20 minutes

SANS Daily StormCast

The Daily StormCast podcast offers a brief daily summary of what is happening in cybersecurity. Content is late-breaking and educational with input from the SANS Internet Stormcenter. The Daily Stormcast is perfect if you have a few minutes in your daily schedule to tune in regularly.

New Episodes: Daily (weekdays)

Run Time: 5 minutes

Open Web Application Security Project (OWASP) - Portland, Oregon Chapter

This is an excellent podcast from the Portland, Oregon Chapter of the Open Web Application Security Project. This podcast features impressive guests from a range of backgrounds, including web application security and the wider infosec community.

New Episodes: Fortnightly

Run Time: 20 minutes to 45 minutes

Top Episodes: Jonathan Badeen (Tinder Co-Founder), Bruce Schneier, Eva Galperin (Director of Cybersecurity at the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF)).

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References

Malicious Life - Cybersecurity History Podcast

Malicious Life

The Risky Business Podcast

Risky Business

Darknet Diaries – True stories from the dark side of the Internet.

Darknet Diaries

SANS Blueprint Podcast - Interviews with Cyber Defense Leaders

SANS Institute

Talos Takes Podcasts

Cisco Talos Intelligence Group

CPRadio

Check Point

Hacker Valley

Hacker Valley Studio

Symantec Cyber Security Brief Podcast

Symantec

Daily Information Security Podcast ('StormCast')

SANS Institute

OWASP Portland, Oregon Chapter Podcast

Open Web Application Security Project (OWASP) - Portland, Oregon Chapter