How to Become a Cybersecurity Specialist Career Path and Job Description

No contractual rights, either expressed or implied, are created by its content. Perform research, testing, evaluation, and deployment of security technology and procedures. Its involvement in such advanced technology makes it an attractive target.

Is it hard to become a cyber security specialist?

Learning cybersecurity can be challenging, but it doesn't have to be difficult, especially if you're passionate about technology. Nurture a curiosity for the technologies you're working with, and you might find that challenging skills become easier.

Information security specialists assist businesses and organizations in maintaining computer security by preventing hacks, viruses and unauthorized user access. To achieve this, they design, implement and maintain various computer programs and applications. The minimum education requirement for this occupation is typically an undergraduate degree or work experience combined with certification.

Cyber Security Specialist Requirements & Skills 5

However, the lower your degree level when you enter the field, the longer it will take you to move up to a supervisory or higher position, unless you are willing to earn a degree while you work. In today’s era of rapidly escalating threats and sophisticated cyber warfare, organizations need to be vigilant in combating attackers and protecting information assets. IT security specialists leverage an in-depth understanding of cyber security threats, technologies and countermeasures to ensure secure computer systems. If you already hold a degree in an IT branch not connected to cybersecurity, you likely won’t need to get an additional degree. However, it would be best to supplement your education and experience through various IT security certifications to become a cyber security specialist. These can be geared towards ethical hackers, security software developers, security architects, analysts, or any other computer security job title. Choose the right set of certifications based on where you see yourself further down your career path.

it security specialist education requirements

They have an in-depth understanding of vulnerabilities, management systems, and common security applications. Entire movies have been made about cyber-attacks targeting agencies that work with nuclear materials—imagine the disaster that could ensue if a cyber-attacker successfully got into the computer networks of the U.S. We don’t have to imagine that a hack in this or similar facilities is possible. Once you’re a college graduate and working in your chosen field, you’ll be more than ready to earn certifications if you haven’t done so already. You may decide to choose a more generalized set of available positions, because this will allow you to get more experience for any position for which you receive a job offer.

Security Specialist Career Overview

This is another CompTIA certification and may be one of the most valuable you can earn. You’ll cover cryptography, network architecture/design, threats, attacks, vulnerabilities, risk management and identity, and access management. So now that you know what a cyber security engineer does, what they make, and how secure the career is, you no doubt are curious about how to become one. The bad news (at least from a business owner’s perspective) is that there will be a corresponding widening skill gap regarding cyber security professionals. Before exploring how to become a cyber security engineer, let us learn more about the role. The average salary of a cybersecurity specialist is $99,652, according to

  • Most entry-level IT security jobs require at least a bachelor’s degree in cyber security, information assurance, or a related field of study; these programs typically take 4 years to complete as a full-time student.
  • It doesn’t necessarily have to be a degree in cybersecurity – a related field will work as well, such as computer engineering, computer programming, computer and information sciences, and others.
  • There are several technical and community colleges that offer shorter certificate programs for aspiring information security specialists.
  • With these credentials, security professionals validate and even improve their ability to implement best practices as security specialists, paving the way to more expertise and job opportunities.
  • This program is designed to provide a comprehensive program to develop a skilled workforce in the emerging field of information technology security.

This program prepares graduates to become employed as IT security specialists, firewall and VPN specialists, and data assurance specialists. Additionally, the program concentrates on industry-specific requirements in the health care and financial areas, as well as other institutions that currently use electronic commerce.

Professional Organizations for Cybersecurity Specialists

IT security professionals are also be expected to monitor the company network for any breaches or vulnerabilities, devising plans for further safeguarding as needed. The more a security specialist can guard against attacks, the more a business is able to function at full technological throttle. Computer security specialists work in a variety of settings, including corporate offices, government agencies, and educational institutions.

The BLS estimated that median annual salary for information security analysts, was approximately $103,590 in 2020. Cyber security specialists were employed most often in the field of computer system design and related services. According to, as of October 2021, annual salaries for computer security specialists ranged how to become a security specialist from about $49,000 to $109,000. A bachelor’s degree program will include classes such as advanced computer security and advanced operating systems. Additionally, it might include studies in programming, principles of software engineering, criminal justice, mathematics, technical writing, computer forensics and network security.

What skills does a computer programmer need?

In terms of skills, experience, and general mindset, a cybersecurity specialist needs to be like a Swiss Army knife of the digital world. A person in this role needs to be multi-disciplinary and adaptable to a wide variety of situations.

  • The certification covers topics such as architecture, engineering, and management.
  • As cyberattacks become more common, demand for computer security specialists will increase because these workers will be needed to help prevent and mitigate damage from cyberattacks.
  • IT Security Specialists hold networking and administrative skills in Windows-based TCP/IP networks, as well as familiarity with a variety of operating systems, including OS X, Unix, or Linux.
  • Security specialists also secure data networks, intercept security breaches, and make changes to improve security.
  • With the option to pay in full, break down payments or utilize government grant funding, we help expand that access.

Cybersecurity specialists need to be comfortable in a world that is constantly moving and shifting. New digital attack vectors and mechanisms are popping up all of the time, and a cybersecurity specialist is tasked with figuring out what kinds of skills and experience are required to protect against those emerging threats. Additionally, cybersecurity specialists are often called on in times of crisis or emergency — or when there are issues with networks or data systems. These specialists apply programming languages and ingenuity to create solutions for complex issues. Developing security systems often involves the collaboration of many specialized professionals. There are certain skills that cyber security analysts use on a daily basis. While these are not requirements, they are skills that successful people in this career area generally possess.

Skills for specialists

IT security specialists need strong communication skills, as they are responsible for educating technical and non-technical staffers on computer security protocols and raising information security awareness. Because you want a security career, you will have to learn how to perform certain actions and you’ll have to gain certain skills. Remember, governments and agencies are looking to make it easy to get into cybersecurity because they are desperate to find employees with the skills they need to protect their infrastructure. However, it can still cost significant funds and require you to spend months in learning seminars to gain these all-important skills. Though there are many cybersecurity positions where a master’s degree is not required, it is increasingly common to see an advanced degree listed as “required” or “preferred” in listings for top jobs. According to CyberSeek’s breakdown of the cybersecurity specialist position, 63% of employers require a bachelor’s degree and 20% require a master’s degree. Most IT security specialists will begin with an industry-relevant degree such as computer science, information technology or a similarly relevant subject.

All available job and salary information is from Burning Glass Labor Insights and is updated annually to reflect industry changes. DISCLAIMER – ECPI University makes no claim, warranty, or guarantee as to actual employability or earning potential to current, past or future students or graduates of any educational program we offer. Every effort is made to ensure the accuracy of information contained on the domain; however, no warranty of accuracy is made.

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They also send reports of use to various members of the organization for verification. Finally, computer security specialists are responsible for keeping accurate and up-to-date backup files of all important data shared on a computer network. As a cybersecurity professional, you will be involved in the monitoring, testing, and troubleshooting of security systems and networks. You’ll need extensive knowledge on the security tools at your disposal, including how to install and operate them.

IT Security Specialists hold networking and administrative skills in Windows-based TCP/IP networks, as well as familiarity with a variety of operating systems, including OS X, Unix, or Linux. If you think you have what it takes to earn a Bachelor of Science in Computer and Information Science with a Major in Cyber and Network Security, ECPI University offers this degree program at an accelerated course of study.

Cyber Security Specialist Requirements & Skills 8

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. The Certified Ethical Hacker certification is also considered a more advanced cert because it generally requires that applicants have multiple years of work experience. The goal of an ethical hacker certification is to be able to understand how cyber attacks unfold in order to improve threat assessment and mitigation skills. Tell us a little about yourself and we’ll connect you with schools that offercyber security degreeprograms. Learn more about the responsibilities, duties, and daily tasks of security specialists and how they make a difference in their companies.

it security specialist education requirements

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