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6 Steps to Become An IT Security Specialist

If you’re wondering how to get into cybersecurity, read on to explore salaries, job outlooks and available certifications in the field. cybersecurity specialists are knowledgeable about cybersecurity and have the tools needed to ensure a company’s computer systems remain secure. They create and implement security plans for businesses and remain up to date on the latest trends in the field. A 2019 Burning Glass Technologies report notes that most cybersecurity jobs (65%) require a bachelor’s degree.

There’s also the option to go the extra mile and attain a master’s degree in categories such as information technology management. Choosing a reputable online degree program can make earning your bachelor’s or master’s more accessible by granting you freedom and flexibility in managing your course load. Now that you better understand what an IT security specialist does, you can determine whether this in-demand computer field is the right match for meeting your career goals in IT. A big challenge for aspiring security specialists is getting their first job without years of experience. Networking, internships, and certifications can help individuals land entry-level security positions. Many cybersecurity experts start out as network engineers, help desk technicians, or systems administrators.

How long does it take to become an IT security specialist?

Requirements to enter the field vary by job and employer, but cybersecurity professionals usually need extensive knowledge and certifications. Others attend technology bootcamps, and many pursue a college degree in cybersecurity. With the necessary technical skills, you can apply for entry-level tech positions. You can also pursue entry-level certifications that prove your expertise without professional experience. Some cybersecurity professionals pursue experience before earning certification.

  • As you might expect, IT security specialists require extensive technical skills and knowledge to effectively do their jobs.
  • Many cybersecurity experts start out as network engineers, help desk technicians, or systems administrators.
  • Find out how different WGU is about personalizing and supporting your education.

Cyber security jobs of all sorts are becoming increasingly crucial in the digital age. From a specialist to an analyst to the IT security director, there are many jobs that focus on network security and all of these positions are vital for information security success. As a result, cyber security jobs have only grown in importance and demand—especially with the growth of ransomware attacks and data breaches that expose sensitive information. If you are pursuing a degree in computer science or information technology with career interests related to the in-demand field of cyber security, then you may be wondering what an IT security specialist does. Since maintaining secure information systems is essential for business leaders today, IT security specialists are vital professionals who help companies protect their information assets in secure systems. As cyber attacks continue to grow in frequency and sophistication, more IT security specialists are in need to assist companies in finding innovative solutions for preventing hackers from stealing information.

How Do I Become a Cybersecurity Specialist?

As the number and severity of cyber attacks continues to rise, the responsibilities placed on information security specialists are also continually expanding and becoming increasingly complex in nature. Given the broad scope of cybersecurity specialist work, not all employers require significant professional experience when hiring. Some organizations employ these specialists in entry-level roles, allowing them to develop on-the-job experience. Cybersecurity specialists protect sensitive data and analyze vulnerable spots in company networks. These professionals detect and analyze potential threats, evaluate risks, and respond to security incidents. Job titles include network defender, incident responder, and security administrator.

But increasingly, the success of a business relies on the success and capability of its network. As a result, employees dedicated full time to cybersecurity have gone from being a luxury to a necessity. 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.

Compare top-rated IT security training programs in the U.S. and online. For this announcement, all applicants will be reviewed to determine if they meet the basic qualifications for this position, specifically the educational requirements. Applications that are verified to meet the basic qualifications will be referred to the selecting official.

it security specialist

Entry-level positions often involve developing code, troubleshooting problems, and testing malware. The more a security specialist can guard against attacks, the more a business is able to function at full technological throttle. Cybersecurity specialists handle a broad set of technical responsibilities related to safeguarding sensitive digital information and data. Depending on the size of their employer, these cybersecurity experts may work in niche, specialized areas of the field or oversee more general security tasks. They provide ongoing oversight for organizations’ cybersecurity efforts through several methods.

it security specialist

Whatever path they choose, security specialists need strong technical skills and a commitment to continuing education. Information security specialists are employed in various industries to help organizations create disaster recovery plans and carry out security measures that will protect the company’s computer networks and systems from being comprised. Some IT security specialists may also work on teams within the information technology department to collaborate with network administrators, computer systems analysts, and software developers. Most information security specialists work for computer systems design companies, consulting firms, private corporations, and financial institutions. Other companies may stipulate that they seek cybersecurity specialists with a specific amount of professional experience. Candidates can accrue experience in other cybersecurity roles or through internships while still pursuing their degrees to meet this requirement.

it security specialist

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