Top 5 Thriving Cybersecurity Careers

In the modern day, cybersecurity is one of the biggest issues that business can face – no matter what their size or the industry they are in. Because of this, there is a high demand for cybersecurity professionals around the world.

A cybersecurity professional will have a wide range of responsibilities, from protecting online data to implementing training within the workforce.

Due to this, it’s considered to be one of the most complex career paths to take. However, the benefits that come with it arguably outweigh many of the difficulties that arise. 

If you’re thinking about becoming a cybersecurity professional, or you’re looking to hire one in the future, here is a list of the most popular cybersecurity roles along with their responsibilities and salary expectations. 

Certifications You’ll Require 

Certifications are critical within the world of cybersecurity.

Due to the skills and experience needed to undertake a variety of tasks, you need to have the formal qualifications before you start operating within the industry.

Many employers will also look for these when they are hiring within their workforce:

  • Certified Ethical Hacker (CEH) – this is a great certification to have for entry-level applicants. It will showcase to employers that you have demonstrated the knowledge required to efficiently assess the security of computer systems. 
  • Certified Information Systems Auditor (CISA) – focusing on controlling, monitoring, auditing and assessing information systems, this certification is key for anyone looking to become a penetration tester or security specialist. 
  • Global Information Assurance Certification (GIAC) – this certification directly focuses on intrusion detection, forensics and other hands-on technical capabilities. 
  • Certified Information Security Manager (CISM) – this certification concentrates on compliance, risk management and governance.  
  • Certified Information Systems Security Professional (CISSP) – this is considered to be one of the top certifications required by those working within cybersecurity. With this certification, it demonstrates a lot of skills and experience that are required for jobs within the Department of Defense.

Penetration Tester

Penetration testers are in charge of monitoring and identifying any vulnerabilities within a business’ network. Regularly probing and testing the network using state of the art software, it’s a very skilled role. To become a penetration tester, not only will you need the certification listed above, but formal education.

Typically, employers will require at least a relevant bachelor’s degree, such as in computer science. Alongside this, many employers also look for candidates with several years of experience in the field – such as with Linux or Unix operating systems. To find the right balance, a knowledge of a range of operating systems, security software and programming languages is recommended.

The estimated salary for a penetration tester can be anywhere from $80,000 – $140,000 depending on the organization and the experience you have. 

Security Specialist

Whether you’re looking to get into a small or large business, a security specialist is vital to their organization. Helping to protect their networking security system and software, it’s a smart career path to take.

As you become more established as a security specialist you will be the go-to person for all of the workforces cybersecurity needs. Alongside this, you’ll have the following duties:

  • Keeping up to date with security improvements and updates.
  • Protecting the network against illegal access and damage.
  • Implement colleague training.
  • Develop specialized security requirements.

Although many employers will accept a few years of work experience and an associate degree, others will require a technical bachelor’s degree. If you really want to impress then a master’s degree in technical security along with relevant certifications are the way to go.

The estimated salary for a security specialist can be anywhere from $90,000 – $150,000 depending on the organization, where you live and the experience you have. 

Security Architect

Similarly to a security specialist, a security architect is responsible for analyzing any security threats that arise. Once they have been targeted, they will advise on solutions to help protect the data and information from future threats. 

Educating staff on security policies, installing firewalls and VPNs, designing specific security models and participating in the development of software, their specialist skills mean that it’s one of the highest-paid roles in cybersecurity. 

To become a security architect, you will require up to 10 years of relevant IT experience, including skills in business planning, application development and systems analysis. 

In terms of formal education, you should have a bachelor’s degree in computer science, cybersecurity or a related field. Alongside this, you can attain a master’s degree in IT security, with training and certifications.

The estimated salary for a security architect can be anywhere from $120,000 – $190,000 depending on the organization, where you live and the experience you have. 

Lead Software Security Engineer

If you’re looking for a more technical and more advanced role in cybersecurity, then a lead software security engineer might be the best choice for you. Tasked with leading and guiding a team of security experts, assessing the risk of security, identifying vulnerabilities and developing secure software, it’s a very complex role.

Because of this, many employers require a security engineer to have a bachelor’s degree in cybersecurity or computer science. Additionally, they might require a master’s degree in IT security. In terms of work experience, you’re expected to have up to 10 years working within several prominent organizations. 

The estimated salary for a security architect can be anywhere from $125,000 – $150,000 depending on the organization, where you live and the experience you have. 

Computer Forensic Investigator

A computer forensics expert carries a lot of responsibilities. Working with networks, databases, firewalls and several devices, there are several key Computer forensics investigators skills that you will require and that are invaluable within any workforce. 

Often called after a security breach, you will have to identify the extent of the breach, along with why it happened before gathering evidence to prove who did it. 

Not only will you have to ensure that you handle evidence meticulously, but you’ll also have to train first responders on the appropriate way of dealing with the various devices involved in the incident. If it’s discovered that certain drives have been compromised, the investigation will be put at risk and you could find yourself in court.

Alongside the above responsibilities, another path you could take is to work within a law firm as a cybersecurity consultant. Defending clients that have been accused of cybercrimes, you’ll have to work on assessing the evidence, looking at how it was collected and handled. 

As computer forensics investigators and experts are high in demand, you’ll find yourself in a great position once you have the appropriate certifications, experience and degree. With a salary that starts at $50,000 and goes over the $150,000 mark once you’ve progressed, it’s a very promising career to enter.

Final Thoughts

So, there you go!

Those are the top 5 most thriving and popular cybersecurity careers in the industry today.

What career you choose, of course, is up to you and will depend on your personal preference, your qualifications, the salary you wish to obtain and the career trajectory you want in the future. Whatever you choose, however, you can look forward to an ever-evolving and profitable career that will be different every single day.

If you’re an employer, you will recognize the skills and certifications needed for roles within cybersecurity and be able to determine the right fit for the job. The best candidate will arguably have a good balance of work experience, the right certifications and a relevant degree that’s given them the best skills possible.

© New To HR

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