What You Need To Be In The Up-And-Coming Cybersecurity Field

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Looking for an exciting job in tech? Cybersecurity as a newer field is huge, well-paying, promising… and full of vacant jobs. Damage from cybercrime to business is projected to hit $6 trillion each year by 2021, and spending on cybersecurity efforts are going to follow that upward trend. Yet there are very real concerns that there are not enough qualified and interested applicants to fill open cybersecurity positions.

Interested in trying your hand at this innovative job? Here’s a few qualifications you may need:

  • Mastery in an area of tech besides security.
  • Knowledge of IT fundamentals.
  • Data analysis skills.
  • The drive to keep on top of new problems and invent creative solutions.
  • Contributions to open-source projects showing initiative.

Okay, say you have a few of those qualifications, but you need to fill in the gaps with quality cybersecurity education. There are many certification options available, including some straight from tech giants like Google and IBM. Here are 10 popular courses recommended for cybersecurity hopefuls:

  1. CEH: Certified Ethical Hacker
  2. CISM: Certified Information Security Manager
  3. CompTIA Security+
  4. CISSP: Certified Information Systems Security Professional
  5. GSEC: GIAC Security Essentials
  6. ECSA: EC-Council Certified Security Analyst
  7. GPEN: GIAC Penetration Tester
  8. SSCP: Systems Security Certified Practitioner
  9. CRISC: Certified in Risk and Information System Control
  10. CISA: Certified Information Systems Auditor

Hopefully by now you’ve identified some of your qualifications and some relevant certifications you could acquire. But what else are employers looking for in cybersecurity hires? Federal Reserve Bank of Boston CIO Don Anderson recently shared his unique strategy with The Enterprisers Project. Here’s a summary.

First, Anderson is interested in “people with strong negotiation skills who could double as consultants”. Essentially, his ideal applicant would have soft skills for communication that go beyond the hard skills of technology. This is a pretty typical request for most demanding positions these days; studies show that employers really love valuable soft skills complementing their employees’ required job skillset so they can contribute more to company culture and innovation.

Second, folks with a background in law enforcement have reportedly transitioned well into cybersecurity training, according to Anderson’s experience at FRBB. He also says that auditors “and even IT interns” train well in security, as their prior skillset introduces a lot of helpful experience outside the strictly-cybersecurity view.

Food for thought. Does it seem like you have what it takes to pursue a cybersecurity job?

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