5 Cybersecurity Career Paths and How to Get Started

If you’re interested in getting a job as a cybersecurity analyst, here are some steps you can take to get on your way. If you’re interested in starting a career in cybersecurity, consider the Microsoft Cybersecurity Analyst Professional Certificate on Coursera. This program is designed ​​to help individuals with no previous experience learn in-demand skills, and prepare for Microsoft’s SC-900 exam and a first job in cybersecurity, all at their own pace.

what do cybersecurity professionals do

You can continue developing your skill set as you progress in your career and decide which sector is best for you. If you are considering changing careers, you likely have some questions! In this free guide, we’ll answer popular questions about the cybersecurity industry and how you can best enter the field with little to no formal experience. In terms of skills, experience, and general mindset, a cybersecurity specialist needs to be like a Swiss Army knife of the digital world.

Cybersecurity manager job description

If you don’t have any professional experience or educational training, there are different options you can consider when trying to break into the cybersecurity field. How you gain the skills is completely up to you, but generally, you can opt for a traditional method such as a four-year university or similar type of schooling. This might not be the most practical option for those with full-time jobs or who have previously earned a degree in an unrelated field. Of course, to be eligible for entry-level positions in the cybersecurity job market, you will require relevant skills and qualifications.

  • Some schools may categorize cybersecurity as a specialization within a broader information technology or computer science program.
  • Cybersecurity specialists work with other security professionals, including cybersecurity architects and engineers, to ensure that an organization’s actual system remains as secure as possible.
  • If you don’t have any professional experience or educational training, there are different options you can consider when trying to break into the cybersecurity field.
  • Information security shares some overlap with cybersecurity—in fact, cybersecurity is a subset of information security.

They are also responsible for anticipating future threats and advising on how to deal with them. To become a cybersecurity specialist, you should complete a formal education—like a degree or a cybersecurity bootcamp—in information security or a related subject. The following section explores the requirements for becoming a cybersecurity analyst. Her writing expertise extends to brand strategies and driving small business growth through targeted content. In the last three years, she’s primarily produced education-focused content, writing on topics like degree programs, trade schools and career pathways. These professionals carry out security measures, update current security systems and conduct regular audits to ensure compliance with relevant regulations.

Cybersecurity analyst salary

As a newswriter in her early career, Brenna’s education reporting earned national awards and state-level accolades in California and North Carolina. Since 2018, she has worked in the higher-education web content space, where she aims to help current and prospective students of all backgrounds find effective, accessible pathways to rewarding careers. On the other hand, some employers prefer to hire candidates who have traditional college degrees. Likewise, bootcamps may be too time-intensive to allow students to continue working while enrolled.

Digitally, infrastructure security refers to creating and maintaining protected systems from breaches. Payscale reports an average annual cybersecurity salary of around $97,000, and these wages typically increase with experience. In addition to the careers listed above, five careers in cybersecurity include security architect, malware analyst, IT security consultant, security software developer and chief information security officer. Forbes Advisor’s education editors are committed to producing unbiased rankings and informative articles covering online colleges, tech bootcamps and career paths.

Featured Cybersecurity Training

As a security engineer, you’ll use your knowledge of threats and vulnerabilities to build and implement defense systems against a range of security concerns. You may advance to become a security architect, responsible for your organization’s entire security infrastructure. Pursuing a career in cybersecurity means joining a booming industry where available jobs outnumber qualified candidates. According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the number of cybersecurity jobs is expected to increase by 32 percent between 2022 and 2032 [1]. Cybersecurity is the profession of protecting digital information, devices, and networks from unauthorized users.

what do cybersecurity professionals do

Good communication, problem-solving, and analytical skills are also important for a cybersecurity specialist. The Certified Information Systems Security Professional (CISSP) is a more advanced certification designed for cybersecurity professionals with at least five years of work experience. The certification covers topics such as architecture, engineering, and management.

Master’s Degree in Cybersecurity

As experts in cybersecurity, these specialists help to create, analyze and deploy organizational security systems. Cybersecurity specialists test for areas of potential exposure in interconnected computer networks, document their findings and provide solutions for vulnerabilities. Bootcamps’ rigorous curricula equip students to launch their cybersecurity careers. Cybersecurity bootcamps typically cover topics like computer forensics, network security and defense, risk management and cryptography. Many bootcamps prepare students to take cybersecurity certification exams.

Their work can be focused on hardware, software, or any other system that cybercriminals may wish to infiltrate, bypass, or steal. We recommend finding what your strengths are and looking into positions that help amplify them so you can develop a strong foundation. You can also continue to learn new skills to evolve into different job titles and positions as needed. Regardless of your job title, you can cybersecurity specialist program expect to work directly with different teams to help prevent vulnerabilities. Of course, if you have no formal education or training in the cyber field, it can be confusing to know where to start. In addition, security specialists are also responsible for making sure that other co-workers are kept up-to-date on security best practices, which means they might take on the role of a trainer or an advisor.

There are more cybersecurity jobs than there are people with the right skills to fill them. Develop those skills, and you can make yourself a more competitive candidate for the tens of thousands of open cybersecurity analyst jobs in the US. PenTest+ is for intermediate level cybersecurity professionals who are tasked with penetration testing to manage vulnerabilities on a network. Despite the need to work together with other technology professionals, cybersecurity employees tend to focus on different issues than IT workers. These issues include preventing and analyzing data security incidents and developing and enforcing security standards to protect digital information.

what do cybersecurity professionals do

Cyber security experts juggle a variety of daily job duties to accomplish their mission of protecting data. He adds that cyber security specialists are also responsible for creating a plan of action in case security breaches do occur. A computer science degree provides a foundation in information technology (IT), including understanding TCP/IP protocols that are at the core of all networking. Further educational certification may help professionals get a job in cybersecurity. The CCNA Cyber Ops certification program provides practical, relevant, and job-ready curricula that aligns closely with the specific tasks expected of cybersecurity professionals. However, the qualifications required for a cybersecurity job can vary from employer to employer.

Network security professionals use firewalls, physical hardware and education efforts to safeguard against intrusions and retain lost data. Cybersecurity specialists can anticipate strong employment growth over the coming decade. For example, The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reports a 32% projected employment growth rate for information security analysts from 2022 to 2032. This title encompasses roles like cybersecurity analyst and information security specialist. Cybersecurity specialists perform similar work to information security specialists but may focus more on hardware.

what do cybersecurity professionals do