How To Start a Career in Cyber Security – The Newbie Coder Friendly Guide

As technology keeps evolving there is always going to be high rates of cyber-crime hence an unending need for cyber security professionals with varying skill sets. A very interesting specialty if you ask me. The needs for cyber security professionals are interdisciplinary and this is a field that contributes to our overall safety on the Internet. It comes with a high rate of job satisfaction, knowing that you are contributing to the greater good of internet users. You probably don’t intend getting into cyber security full time but learning the basics isn’t a waste as it’ll equip you with skills to manage your own personal business on the Internet.

This article gives a comprehensive guide on what cyber security is, the 5 best ways to get integrated in the cyber security field and the career options available in the field.

What is Cyber Security

Cyber security is the act of protecting digital and electronic content from cyber attackers who typically carry out cyber-attacks to steal, destroy or temper with businesses and peoples property in general.

Importance of Cyber Security

Over the years, we’ve seen the extent at which our connectivity to the internet has grown. From social media, to e-commerce, digital banking and what have you. This means that now more than ever, our personal information and information of businesses is being stocked and tracked

Electronically, creating representations of the kind of people we are, what we do an don’t, and what our habits are. If information like this gets in the wrong hands, there is no telling what they will do with it. This is why the need for cyber security professionals is on the rise and is predicted to keep rising even in the future.

As businesses lean more towards electronic operations, the need for professionals to ensure their safety on the Internet increases. A weak point that is being exploited by cyber attackers is IoT (Internet of things). Due to the high level of insecurity IoT devices have, it is easy to manipulate them to produce functions other than for what they were built to do. Itʼs not unheard of that fraudulent bank transactions have rendered victims of these attacks broke and penniless. This is because cyber attackers manipulate electronic banking systems especially when the owner is careless with their credentials.

Is Cyber Security a Good Fit for you ?

If you consider pursuing a career in cyber security then you may want to check out the

following points to test if you’re a good fit.

-Take a free lesson and get abreast with the material, then decide whether it is something you would like to invest your time in.

-If you have a knack for solving problems even before they exist, then you will most likely be comfortable in this field.

-Analyze what skills you already have and take note of the skills you will need to gain in order to build a career in cyber security. Are you ready to put in the work to gain these, and if yes are you ready to continue learning throughout your career? Because this is a constantly evolving field.

– Last but not least, check for job openings in cyber security in your location. It will not be pleasant to invest so much into studying and end up with no job.

5 steps to getting yourself into cyber security.

Maximize Free Content

There are loads of free content available in different forms on the cyber security field. While this can be overwhelming, you can pick a few and follow religiously as you try to build a career in cyber security. These resources can be in the form of webinars, YouTube videos, podcasts, and blog posts. Focus on building your skills.

Cyber security professionals need to possess skills in coding, Linux, and network. Starting from the very basic skills and walking your way up will help you get a grip on all the important concepts. So many free resources are available online, and you can access growth by taking part in competitions to test your knowledge.

Connect with Industry Experts

Learning from experts who have had years of hands-on experience will better your insight about the world of cyber security. One way of making use of these individuals is by creating mentor/mentee relationships. Mentors help follow up mentees with their progress and make sure that they work in the right direction.

Attend Events

Attending events such as conferences, training, summits, webinars in order to level up and engage with relevant IT professionals. A good number of these exist at little to no cost both virtually and physically.

Belong to a Community

Belonging to a community especially in the beginning years is important because it gives you an opportunity to realize that your struggles aren’t yours only. Other people face the same type of challenges you face as you try to get into cyber security. It also builds networks and a window for sharing opportunities with others.

Careers in Cyber Security

There are different specialties in cyber security which you could focus on rather than trying to acquire all the skills. While this is possible, it reduces your chances of being an expert because

you’re all over the place with the generalities of cyber security. Earnings across the different specialties in this vast field of cyber security obviously vary and are dependent on qualification, negotiation and length of service.

Irrespective, the basic cyber security professional earns a very good annual sum, way above average.

Some of the specialties in this field include;

  • Cyber Security Generalist
  • Network Security Engineering
  • Application Security Specialist
  • Cloud Security Engineer
  • Identity and Access Management Engineer.
  • Security Architect
  • Penetration Tester
  • Malware/Forensics Analyst
  • Incident Response Analyst
  • Cryptographer
  • Security Trainer
  • Security Auditor
  • Governance Risk and Compliance Officer
  • Cybersecurity Engineer

Getting into cybersecurity doesn’t have to be tedious as long as necessary measures are taken especially because this is a field that one can get immersed into from a non-technical background.

We also recommend that you read our blog post on learning about ethical hacking.

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