Cyber Security Jobs Guide
With the world going, going, gone digital, the need for cyber security is growing bigger every day. With the growth, come jobs, but where to start?
Most government bodies and industry experts predict that jobs in cyber security will outstrip other industries, both in terms of number of jobs and salaries, significantly over the next 10 to 15 years.
A lot of these jobs will either be workable remotely, or have elements of them that can be done by contract work, in-house or remotely as well
This means there are huge opportunities for people to work in this field, at all different levels, all over the world. Given that cyber security is a worldwide problem, this is not surprising.
Some people may have a clear idea of what part of the industry they want to work in. For most people however, they look at the idea of cyber security but find it a bit overwhelming knowing where to begin.
Cyber Security Job Plan.
Firstly understand the world of cyber security in a global sense, the nature of cyber crime, then narrow it down to the type of jobs available, and the type of work that the person enjoys doing.
It is then a good idea to understand what types of training, certification and experience are needed for each type of job, and look at ways of getting these assets, if the person does not already have them.
It then becomes a practical issue of how to look for a job, both online and in the real world, involving job searches, company approaches, freelance and contract work, resources etc.
Cyber Security Jobs
A cyber security job search falls into two main areas. Firstly the people who know to a large extent what they are looking for, but want more information.
For them, some of the most common questions and queries are listed below, with links to more detailed information.
Following on from this, is a more general guide to the different components of cyber security, their history and current trends, what jobs are available and how best to apply for them.
There’s also a detailed section on the best way to apply for jobs generally, which can be adapted and used in any search for a cyber security job. Click on title for more detailed information
Cyber Security Jobs Common Questions :
Salaries and benefit packages vary enormously within differnet cyber scurity job roles. The important thing is to identify the type of work being done, which should define how much the positin pays. For more information, click here
Many universities and colleges offer degrees in different areas of computing and computer science, and many are now offering degrees specifically in cyber security. For more information, click here
What is a cyber security analyst, how much can you earn, what training is needed and what sort of industries can you work in. For more information, click here
What are the best cyber security entry-level jobs, what additional qualifications may be needed. For more information, click here
Getting the right training for a cyber security jobs is crucial.
What is even more important is to identify the type of work that the individual wants to do first, and then find the right training to fit that. For more information, click here
Virtually all internships offer a trade off, in terms of lack of money verses gaining valuable experience. There is also a strong moral arguement involved. For more information, click here
What is a cyber security engineer, how much can you earn, what training is needed and what sort of industries can you work in. For more information, click here
Even before covid, there were many opportunities to make jobs either remote and / or on-site, or amix of both. This is likely to increase over the next year or so, and may become a permanent future of cyber security work. For more information, click here.
Types of Cyber Security Jobs
Any brief glimpse at one of the online job sites such as indeed or monster will not only return a huge number of hits for cyber security, but also a baffling range of different job titles and job descriptions
This can lead to a very difficult approach as to what type of job the company are actually advertising, and what they really want from a potential employee.
What does come through after this analysis, is that in many ways a lot of job titles, although different in name, are actually referring to the same work that needs doing.
Although this can seem a bit confusing at first, understanding it does give any potential applicant a real advantage, both in terms of knowing what they are looking for, and being able to present their skills and experience in a really focused way.
Some cyber security jobs require very specific experience and technical skills. Some require a specific academic qualifications. Some require a mix of both and some are more vocational in nature
What is equally true, is that as the world becomes more digital through the growth of different devices and products, cyber criminals will develop new ways of trying to gain access to these things.
The world of cyber security is growing and changing all the time, and the nature of jobs in this industry will follow that.
Training and qualifications
Both of these are hugely important for virtually all types of cyber security jobs, alongside certain levels of experience, both general and sometimes specific.
There is a significant amount of training available both online and in schools and universities. Training courses are sometimes used as a slightly backdoor way of telling people what jobs they should be going for, or how the cyber security market works.
While a lot of training may be perfectly good in terms of content and delivery, the provider normally has another agenda as well, which is to sell the training itself.
Part of the sales technique will be to try and make the applicant believe that the training course will deliver certain real-life job benefits by virtue of completion.
This is sometimes true but not always. It is much better that any applicant has a real sense of what type of job they want to do in cyber security, and then seeks to get training and qualifications that are specifically needed that type of job.
Although a bit more long-winded, this a much more effective strategy, both in terms of time and money.
How to get a Job in Cyber Security
This is sometimes an add-on or end of tail aspect of a lot of training courses. In truth it should be at the front of most of them.
Getting a job in cyber security is in some ways no different to try to get a job in other industries. Where it does probably differ is in the pace and direction that the market is changing in.
This can provide unparalleled opportunities for people looking to work in cyber security, but can at the same time make the process seem more complicated.
It is perhaps less fluid than a lot of traditional career structures seem to have been, but actually gives an applicant a lot more freedom to decide how and where they want to work in this field, for how much, and for whom.
At its heart, cyber security is about protecting individuals and organisations from cyber crime.
People often associate cyber security with large corporations being hacked, with valuable information been stolen, and damage being done to everyone involved.
Whilst the scenario it certainly happens, it is by no means the norm.
Cyber crime has replaced or complemented real-life crime in lots of different ways that affect all types of organisations big and small, and individual people of all ages, races and background.
Understanding how to protect people and their devices from cyber crime necessitates an understanding of the cyber security world in a general sense.
This will give anyone looking for a job in cyber security a context within which to operate, and decide which area most interests them, and which area they would most like to work in.
The growth of the Internet, especially the mobile Internet, has spawned huge potential for criminals.
Cyber crime usually involves some attempt to intimidate, steal, blackmail or otherwise extort money or information from individuals and organisations.
It can also include areas such as cyber bullying, and exploitation of children and vulnerable adults for a variety of unpleasant activities, including sexual abuse and domestic violence
The monetary aspect of cyber crime is probably the one that gets the most attention, but the aspects of bullying and exploitation are equally as important, if not more so.
Getting a job in cyber security can mean getting involved in trying to prevent all types of cyber crime, or specialising in one particular type such as child exploitation
If someone wants to work in the financial aspects cyber crime, then it is possible to either specialise in it from a technology point of view, or from a particular industry point of view, or ideally both.
Cyber governance is a bit of a corporate expression, but one that applies to any organisation of any size, and any individual looking to protect themselves and their families from cyber crime.
At its heart, cyber governance is simply about having some type of structured plan, with built-in accountability, to make sure that cyber security has a clear focus, clear leadership, and a prominent place at the heart of the organisation, or the individual and their family’s life.
The shape of cyber governance will differ considerably, both in its shape, and in its formal or informal nature.
A big company is likely to have, or should have, a very structured cyber governance plan, which would run in parallel to their other types of corporate governance.
A family on the other hand, may not think of their home as needing cyber governance, but they may well put in place policies that have the same effect.
This could include limiting internet access for children, or banishing all smart phones from the dinner table.
Anyone wanting to get a job in cyber security will need to understand the principles of cyber governance, both in order to be a part of it, and to make sure there is an effective system and plan in place that makes cyber security a top priority.
Cyber Insurance / Risk Management
Cyber security is about risk management.
Anyone looking objectively at how to protect themselves or their organisation, need to understand what risks there are, how these can be minimised, and then how remaining risks can be most effectively dealt with.
This may well involve some type of cyber insurance policy, often referred to as a cyber liability insurance policy. At the moment, this market is relatively small, but is due to grow massively over the next few years.
Anyone wanting a job in cyber security or cyber security insurance, needs to understand the basic principles of risk management. Whilst this might sound quite obvious, a lot of individuals and a lot of areas of industry can be very risk averse.
Understanding risk and its proportionality gives individuals and organisations a real freedom to make valued judgements, which are more likely to lead to a successful cyber security policy.
Not understanding risk, or being too afraid of risk can have the opposite effect. It can lead to an in effective cyber security policy, which can have serious consequences for an individual or their organisation.
Internet of Things
Many people have heard of the internet of things, but may not be fully aware of how, in a very stealth like way, it is changing the nature of society.
The internet of things simply refers to any type of device or product that can be internet enabled, allowing it to be linked to the internet, thereby widening the online world of the organisation or individual involved.
The internet of things refers to both individuals lives, as well as to manufacturing and industry. It tends to be people’s personal lives that get the most focus, in terms of their homes, cars and lifestyles.
Anyone wanting a job in cyber security needs to be aware of the impact of this process, how the internet of things will profoundly change people’s lives, and how the need for online security is going to become paramount in people’s homes, whether they like it or not.
In its simplest sense, big data simply means lots of information. Where it gets more complicated, is that this information refers to virtually everything that an organisation or individual makes public about themselves.
The scale of information available has mushroomed over the last few years, in part due to so-called social media, and through the amount of information that needs to be provided online by individuals to access a wide range of different services.
Anyone wanting a job in cyber security is to understand big data, and it’s security and privacy implications. This information is collected in different ways by governments, businesses, online companies and others.
The way this information is used is always presented as being to the benefit of individual citizens, whether this is true or not.
The use of artificial intelligence to analyse and show the most effective ways of using this information is to extend still in its infancy, but is already showing worrying signs of how it can work.
People working in cyber security need to understand this process, and be at the heart of protecting all data and information in accord with whatever privacy laws are in place, either nationally or on a global scale
There is also a huge market in illegal information. Although this comes under the category of cyber crime, it is worth pointing out that the depth and level of information available online can have a devastating effect in terms of identity theft.
Jobs in cyber security can include preventative ones, such as helping to advise people of the risks of identity theft, and how best to protect their information.
This can include information such as their credit scores, and how they can make sure that their digital worldit as secure as they would expect that physical world to be.
Cyber Security Resources
A job in cyber security will at some level always necessitate a degree of current knowledge of this world. Knowing what the current trends are in cyber crime in different industries, and how best to protect them, gives job applicants a real edge
Finding good detailed knowledge is not that difficult. What is sometimes more difficult is cutting through the jargon to see what people actually mean.
It is an unfortunate bi-product of the cyber security jobs industry, that a lot of the information available is written in very convoluted and confusing language.
Most professions over the years have done this, adopting jargon as a way of making their industry seem impenetrable to those outside it, the most obvious being health and law.
There are however a number of ways of simplifying the process, and getting to the core information needed in a simple and succinct way.
This will give any job applicant for a cyber security role an edge, and any potential employer a real sense that the applicant is serious, and understands the enormity of the work that they are hoping to get involved in.