Why is Cyber-Security one of the hottest Careers to get into now

…and what you need to get into this career and keep moving up

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Why Is Cybersecurity Important?

The Cybersecurity industry is the new frontier in technology. And while it’s a lucrative field, with a lot of big companies and startups pouring money into this industry, a lot of people may not know what it is or what it entails.

 

Cybersecurity is important because it ensures the privacy and confidentiality of all the data stored in the computers. It also safeguards our personal information and other crucial data like passwords and financial information. It also ensures that the computer operating systems are not hacked by any other person or any country. Cyber security specialists help us to prevent the spread of viruses and malicious software. It also ensures that the software we are using is not infected with any virus or malware. These security issues are important. Cybersecurity also helps us to protect our online transactions and payments from being tampered with by unauthorized persons. With more security incidents every year, the demand is expected to remain strong.

 

Cybersecurity has become very crucial today as we are using the internet more and more. The number of cyber-attacks has increased significantly in recent years. Many companies lose millions of dollars because of these attacks on their IT operating systems. These security issues ensure the demand will stay strong. It is safe to say that this field is a very fast-growing and lucrative one for cybersecurity practitioners.

Why Is Cyber-Security A Good Career?

Cybersecurity Career Outlook & Job Market

Cybersecurity is a growing industry. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the job outlook for computer and information research scientists (including cybersecurity analysts) is expected to grow by 20% from 2016 to 2026, faster than the average for all occupations. (And that’s just for the pure research scientists, not the cybersecurity analysts!) More cybersecurity-related jobs are expected to be created every year than in every other field of science combined.

The cybersecurity career outlook is strong with many diverse positions available in areas like IT, information assurance, computer science, cybersecurity analysts, risk analysis, software security, and more. While the cybersecurity job market is still growing, there is a shortage of qualified candidates. So, if you are going to consider a career in cybersecurity and are willing to put in the time and effort to learn new skills, you have a great chance of getting the job you want.

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High Job Demand for Cyber-Security Workers.

Cyber-Security has many advantages over other careers. First of all, it is in demand. According to Cyberseek.org, there are currently almost 600,000 job openings nationwide, but the supply of people who are qualified is very low. This is ideal when you are looking to change into a new career because you will not be competing with as many others.

How much can you make in Cyber-Security?

According to Ziprecruiter.com, as of January 17, 2022, the average annual pay for Cyber Security in the United States is $112,974 a year.

The majority of Cyber Security salaries currently range between $60,000 (25th percentile) to $145,500 (75th percentile).

Salaries will vary based on your skill set, certifications, experience, and location. Entry-level is less, but there is a lot of room for advancement.

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Skills and Education Needed for a Successful Cybersecurity Career

What skills do you need for a cybersecurity career?

What skills do you need in Cyber-Security?

Skills needed in Cyber-Security are cyber-security management, knowledge of network security principles, strong analytical skills, the ability to operate with various other software and hardware tools. There is also a need for you to have good analytical and research skills, the ability to work in a team or as an individual, the ability to problem-solve and be able to think creatively. You need to be very detail-orientated, and you need to have the ability to work under pressure.

You will also be needed to be able to understand different computer systems, know-how each one works, and what they are used for.

Getting Started in Cyber Security

“Cybersecurity is on the rise with the number of attacks nearly doubling every year. Not only have we seen huge data breaches like Yahoo, Target, and Sony, but we are seeing a rise in cyber attacks on government, corporate, and personal computers by so-called “hacktivists” and “hacktivists.” As if this weren’t enough, we have to worry about the threat of cyber warfare. Even though the United States has the best military in the world, cyber-attacks could cripple our power grid and even our nuclear weapons. Why is the world becoming so hostile towards us? The answer is technology. The more technology we have, the more vulnerable we become. So, what can we do to protect ourselves?

CompTIA A+, Microsoft Network and Security Fundamentals, CompTIA A+, CompTIA Secureity+, Comptia Network+, CompTIA Security+

How do I start a career in the cybersecurity field?

If you are brand new to Cyber-Security, the two most important certifications you need are CompTIA Network+ and CompTIA Security+. You need a strong foundation before you take those courses, so along with that, we recommend CompTIA IT Fundamentals, Microsoft Network and Security Fundamentals, CompTIA A+, CompTIA Network+ and CompTIA Security+. Having these certifications will get you farther than a degree in cybersecurity with no certifications, plus you will get there in far less time.

What are the best entry-level cybersecurity jobs?

Job openings for entry-level cybersecurity jobs are expected to grow by 24% over the next five years. An entry-level job in cybersecurity might have one of the following cybersecurity job titles:

Help Desk Analyst

A Help Desk Analyst is a person who works for a company’s IT department and is responsible for providing technical support or assistance to users.

Senior Help Desk Analyst

The Senior Help Desk Analyst is a specific position that provides technical assistance and information to users of the organization’s information technology systems. The Senior Help Desk Analyst works with administrative staff as well as other support analysts but has more technical skills than the tier 1 analyst. The Senior Help Desk Analyst assists with the management of services and provides support for setting up, installing, configuring, or troubleshooting hardware or software systems.

IT Support Technician

An IT Support Technician is a person who provides technical support for computers and networks.

IT Helpdesk

An IT helpdesk job is when you are the person who fixes or solves the computer issues of others. You’re the IT specialist that gets put in a pressure situation when someone’s computer crashes

Junior Network Technician

A Junior Network Technician is someone who works with networking equipment and software to set up and maintain a network. They are more specialized than a Systems Administrator, but not as experienced as an IT Professional.

Cybersecurity Technician

A cybersecurity technician is a person who specializes in computer and internet security. Their job is to protect the company’s information that resides on the computer equipment.

Junior Penetration Tester

A junior network penetration tester is the first employee in a company’s IT security and is typically involved in the initial testing of new products or features.

Incident Responder

An Incident Responder is a person who is responsible for identifying and assessing the causes of an incident. The Responder may be responsible for determining the level of risk that the incident poses to the enterprise to determine the best incident response.

Entry Level Cybersecurity Jobs
Cisco; Microsoft, Cloud technology, Azure, AWS, Amazon Cloud, Certified Cyber Security Analyst

Mid Level Cyber Security Skills

Now that you have your foundation skills and are ready to move up, you have several options: Cloud Technology is huge, so Microsoft Azure and Amazon (AWS) are highly sought after. You should also consider our Cisco Cyber Security Analyst program (Cisco CCNA plus Cisco Cyber Ops Associate) and more.

Advanced Level Cyber Security Skills

Are you ready to move up to the top? We recommend our Cyber Forensic Intrusion program, which includes Certified Ethical Hacker (CEH), Cyber Security Analyst (CySA), and Computer Hacking Forensics Investigator CHFI. Other advanced level cyber security certifications include Certified Information Systems Security Professional (CISSP), Microsoft Azure Security Engineer, Certified Information Systems Auditor (CISA), Certified Information Security Manager (CISM), Certified in Risk and Information Systems Control (CRISC)

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Higher Level Jobs As You Advance In Your Cybersecurity Pathway

There is a wide range of cybersecurity career paths, from network administrators to software engineering and many more as this list of cybersecurity job titles will demonstrate:

Information Security Officer

An information security officer is a security manager who is responsible for implementing and managing the information security policies, practices, security measures, and procedures within an organization. These security managers work with IT specialists to develop, maintain, and implement the policies, procedures, and technologies that protect the organization’s information assets. They ensure that information security is included in all of the organization’s business processes and technology systems. They also ensure that assets are adequately protected from physical security threats, such as fire and theft; and from cyber threats, such as intentional or unintentional disclosure of confidential information.

Security Consultant / Security Specialist

A Security Consultant is someone who is employed by a company or organization, typically in the IT industry, to offer advice and assistance in areas such as network security and data protection. They will take

Cybersecurity Analyst

A Cybersecurity Analyst is someone who works to protect information assets by identifying, measuring, and mitigating security risks. Cyber security analysts are often responsible for developing cybersecurity strategies and managing IT infrastructure.

A Cybersecurity Analyst works in the IT industry and is responsible for managing data protection and network security. They also work to identify risks, threats, and vulnerabilities through research. A Cybersecurity Analyst will typically work with IT policies to set up a framework that enables the security of information and network resources.

Cloud Security Architect

A Cloud Security Architect is a person who is qualified to design and implement security measures in an organization’s cloud environment. This person’s job is to ensure data security, access levels, and necessary maintenance of the cloud infrastructure. A Cloud Security Architect will engage with stakeholders from both the IT and business sides of an organization.

Ethical Hacker / Penetration Tester

Ethical hackers are individuals that have a strong passion for security and ethical hacking, and they dedicate themselves to finding vulnerabilities in computer systems.

They use the same tools as criminal hackers, but their goal is to find vulnerabilities in a system before the bad guys do. They are often the first line of defense against cyber threats. A Cloud Security Architect will work with ethical hackers to make sure that their testing does not break production systems. 

Chief Information Security Officer

Chief Information Security Officers (CISOs) are the head of a company’s IT security department. They are responsible for overseeing their organization’s security policies, planning and implementing security measures to combat cyber threats, managing and improving security systems, and ensuring that the company is in compliance with government and industry regulations. CISOs are also responsible for managing relationships with external companies in their industry to ensure they are implementing best practices.

Cybersecurity Auditor

Security auditors may work for a government agency that investigates and evaluates the effectiveness of an organization’s information security program. This includes the organization’s information systems, information-technology network, and information security personnel. The results of an audit are used to monitor the level of protection against system vulnerabilities, evaluate compliance with security policies, and detect fraud and negligence related to information security.

The goal of cyber security auditors is to provide evidence that the organization’s information security program is effectively implemented and operating according to policy. Audits are performed by independent, experienced cyber security auditors.

Network Security Engineers

Network Security Engineers are capable of managing network security at both the organizational and individual levels. They are in charge of detecting and preventing cybersecurity risks such as malware.

Security Software Developers

Security software developers are people who develop software that can be used for different security purposes. They can design and develop security programs or systems for organizations to use. Security software developers are in charge of creating software that is used to secure computer networks, individual computers, websites, mobile devices, etc.

Cybersecurity Engineers

Cybersecurity engineers are IT professionals who specialize in computer security. They focus on the design and implementation of software or hardware systems to maintain the integrity and confidentiality of data.

So, Cybersecurity engineers are the ones who have to ensure that the data is protected from unauthorized access. What do Cybersecurity Engineers do? Cybersecurity engineers are responsible for designing and implementing software or hardware systems to ensure the integrity and confidentiality of data.

How to Build a Successful Career in Information security/cybersecurity

In the past, applying to a cybersecurity job meant you were ready to get hands-on experience with hacking tools and the latest malware. Today, the field has become much more professional, with a growing number of roles based on security engineering, Infosecurity, and cyber forensics. But the idea of a professional career in cybersecurity still seems alien to some, especially considering the fact that cybersecurity is a very technical field. To get started, you will need certifications to show you have the practical skills needed to begin your career rather than a degree in cybersecurity. There is nothing wrong with a degree, but the right certifications will take you further and faster. To advance, you need more certifications to show you have the proven skills to take on more complicated and challenging tasks.

Cybersecurity Education and Training

Cybersecurity certifications’ is a phrase that covers a wide array of online credentials for cybersecurity professionals. Each certification is designed to demonstrate that a candidate has practical knowledge in many different aspects of cybersecurity. The different certifications are useful for different reasons: some may be required as part of a job application, while others might be required for advanced-level positions. because of the DOD 8140/8570 requirements, there are many jobs that have a legal requirement that you be certified. Simply put, certification training is the fastest way for you to get into this career and the fastest way to advance

Embrace advanced learning—your way.

Colleges will take a 40 course for certification classes, if they even teach it at all, and spread it out over a semester. Often times the hours will not be convenient for those who work or are looking for work. Employers want to get their people back as soon as possible and unemployed workers need to get back to work. There are better options, that allow you to complete the same class in just 1 – 2 weeks, along with better support options including access to virtual labs, recordings of the class, practice exams, and more. We can offer these benefits along with job placement assistance.

Choose a comprehensive cybersecurity program

Making a decision about a comprehensive cybersecurity program is going to be different for everyone. The first thing you want to do is identify your primary goals and then match them with the certifications needed to achieve those goals. For example, if you want to use the training and certification process to make yourself more marketable in your current job or a new one, then you should look at certifications that are specifically geared toward meeting the needs of your employer. If you are trying to branch out on your own and start a career elsewhere, then you should look at certifications that will help make you more attractive to potential employers in the direction you want to go. 

If you are just getting started, we recommend getting our free eBook, “Cybersecurity for Beginners.Cybersecurity for Beginners eBook

Follow your passion.

To get started in a cybersecurity career, you will need to get the foundation certifications employers want for their new hires. As you gain experience, you will see which areas within the cybersecurity field you find the most interesting and energizing. Then, you can specialize in these areas to become a cybersecurity expert. For example, if you like cloud technology, you should look at getting certifications in Microsoft Azure, Amazon AWS, or Google Cloud technology. If you prefer management, you should consider CISSP. On the other hand, if you enjoy white hat hacking, get your CEH certification.

Taking the Next Step in Your Cybersecurity Career Path

Cybersecurity Career Paths

Information security is an umbrella term that encompasses many cyber-computing topics. In the context of this question, it would include a person’s ability to identify, assess, respond to, and mitigate the risks that threaten any information-based asset, whether physical or virtual. It is comprised of many specialized disciplines, including network security (firewalls, intrusion detection, and prevention systems); cryptography (encryption and digital signatures); risk management (assessments, audits, etc.); security architecture; vulnerability management (penetration testing), and more.

Start with your foundation certifications mentioned above (CompTIA IT Fundamentals, Microsoft Network, and Security Fundamentals, CompTIA A+, Network+ and Security+) and start gaining some experience. Next, see what your employer needs and what they will pay for to get more advanced skills to further your cybersecurity career path..

From there, as you discover which areas both interest you the most and are in greatest demand, you can start to specialize and gain even more advanced certifications in that area, making yourself the specialist and expert in your field.

5 ways you can get into Cyber-Security career

1. Are you unemployed? See if you qualify for a WIOA Grant?

 If you are unemployed, you might qualify for a WIOA Grant. This is a great option because it means it would be free. Funding, availability and program choices vary by where you live, so not everyone can take advantage but start here because it’s free if you qualify. 

2. See if you qualify for the best alternative to a student loan: an Income Share Agreement

if you want a no risk option, this is the way to go. With a  student loan, you assume all the risk. You have to pay it back regardless of what happens. With an Income Share Agreement, you pay nothing and owe nothing until you get placed in a decent job making the minimum threshold. if you get laid off later, you pay nothing until you are back at work. There is no interest. The institution assumes all the risk, so they will need to confirm you have the interest, desire and motivation to succeed before accepting you.

3. See what your employer offers

Many companies offer generous education benefits. Before you pay out of pocket, it is worthwhile checking with your HR department to see what is being offered. 

4. See if your employer has any tuition vouchers

Many times a company like Microsoft or Cisco will offer tuition vouchers to companies to sweeten the deal. These vouchers mean the employee to get trained and the vendor (Microsoft, Cisco, etc.) pays for it. Many of these vouchers get unused because people don’t know they exist and never ask.

5. Get a student loan with deferred payments.

If none of the above options are available and you really want to get into this high demand, high paying career, try to get a student loans with deferred payments until after you finish. This will allow you to get trained and hired before you start paying back your loan.

 

See if you Qualify for a WIOA Grant

Are you unemployed? There is a little known federal grant program that can pay for you to get trained, certified and placed in your career at no cost to you. Availability and amounts are based on where you live. If you qualify, this program can pay up to $10,000 to get trained, certified, and then get help getting placed in their career. The amount and availability vary by county

This can be used to get certified in fields such as Cyber-Security, Information Technology, Project Management, Business Analysis, and more. Some of the most highly sought-after certifications include CompTIA, Microsoft, Cisco, Project Management Professional (PMP), Scrum Master, and others.

The Best Alternative to Student Loans: No Risk Income Share Agreements

If you don’t qualify for a grant, see if you qualify for an Income Share Agreement. This is a no risk option–you pay nothing until you get placed and there is no interest.