It’s no surprise security is a hot topic these days. With recent cyber attacks across the globe and a growing concern for online safety, leadership is seeing the true value of investing in cybersecurity before an attack occurs. Funding for cybersecurity, including staffing, training and software, is quickly becoming a large part of organizations’ budgets. The demand for qualified professionals to protect against attacks has grown as well.
Top Three Cybersecurity Professions
As of 2016, some companies are investing as much as fifty percent of their total hiring budget on security professionals. These professionals typically fall in one of three categories: vulnerability assessment, penetration testers and information security analysts.
A vulnerability assessment team is tasked with tracking activity to see when and where threats may occur. They keep an eye on cyber activity and identify threats. They are trained in vulnerability detection software such as Splunk, Wireshark, ArcSight, Nessus and much more.
Penetration Testers (or ethical hackers) try to hack a company’s system to see if it can be done. They identify issues and recommend fixes. They see what the threats are because they attempt to break-in as a real hacker would. Organizations need professionals who can think like the “bad guys” and find every hole possible in their defense. That way, companies can fill the holes and be ready for potential breaches.
Information Security Analyst professionals work through risk management framework to improve information security. These are some of the most sought-after professionals right now. Instructors are also in-demand as they teach other tech professionals how to be aware and prepared. Education is one of the best ways to arm against threats. After all, most breaches occur from the inside, due simply to mistakes.
Work in Security
So, how can candidates get into the cybersecurity field? How might a security professional improve their skills to land one of these jobs? Proper training is the key. The best place to start is CompTIA Security+. Almost every company expects candidates to be certified, often at the IAT Level 2. In addition, recruiters and hiring managers find that CISSP is the most highly sought after certification for most security positions. Be sure to highlight these skills on your resume or when you talk to a recruiter.
There’s one thing we know for sure: these jobs aren’t going away. As systems become increasingly connected and more companies join the digital transformation, the need for security will likewise increase.