Security analysts, in particular, spend their days studying the devices in use, analyzing network structure, and testing security measures like firewalls and software permissions. In the early 2000’s the continued growth of internet usage led to a rise in internet crime and a call for further internet security. Now, major breaches, like LinkedIn’s data leak in June 2021, threaten to affect a shocking amount of users. is committed to delivering content that is objective and actionable. To that end, we have built a network of industry professionals across higher education to review our content and ensure we are providing the most helpful information to our readers. At the start of new career paths or career changes, everyone must first familiarize themselves with their desired job.

  • Security certification is often required for advancement, and can help candidates boost their resumes and stand out in the job market.
  • Cybersecurity specialists are IT professionals who are trained to detect threats and protect an organization’s sensitive information by implementing security measures.
  • They work to prevent cyber attacks, detect security breaches, and respond to security incidents.
  • Security specialists take responsibility for their organizations’ computer-related security, protecting company data against cyberattacks.
  • While graduate-level degrees aren’t always required for cybersecurity jobs, they can provide great opportunities to cultivate high-level skills and ultimately command more competitive salaries.

Some of the most notable entry-level are network administrators and security administrators, though any role in IT can be helpful. The need for cybersecurity specialists will continue to grow, reaching about 234,000 by 2033. The 10-year projected growth for cybersecurity specialists is 242% above the national rate per the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), CompTIA State of the Tech Workforce 2023 and Lightcast. Cybersecurity specialists earn a median annual salary of $112,000 – this is 142% higher than the median national wage for all occupations. They can be attained through industry certifications, degree programs, internships and work experience.

Information Security

Security architects are in charge of the security budget, staff, and other resources. Matt Whittle has experience writing and editing accessible education-related content in health, technology, nursing and business subjects. They may not be directly employed by law enforcement, but they closely collaborate with them, as well as different law firms that depend on the expert’s detailed security reports. Cybercrimes are punishable by law, and those who are skilled in identifying the culprits are highly valued in the IT security industry. Keep in mind that a pentester’s job isn’t 100% centered around the Hollywood-like thrill of hacking into a seemingly impenetrable infrastructure.

what is a cybersecurity specialist

A cybersecurity specialist might wear many hats depending on the size and shape of his or her company or organization. As the job title implies, cybersecurity specialists are expected to have a certain level of training and expertise that allows them to give advice and training on the latest digital best practices. Many employers require cybersecurity specialists to obtain prior work experience in information security or a related field.

Professional Organizations for Cybersecurity Specialists

Good communication, problem-solving, and analytical skills are also important for a cybersecurity specialist. Aspiring security specialists should gain as much experience as possible in using SIEM, programming languages, firewalls, and threat protection software. A strong foundation of education, combined with internships and professional experience, set candidates up for success. Specific fallout from security breaches can vary depending on the type of work an organization does. These specialists apply programming languages and ingenuity to create solutions for complex issues. Developing security systems often involves the collaboration of many specialized professionals.

what is a cybersecurity specialist

Among them are intrusion detection, malware analysis and mitigation, programming knowledge and cloud security analysis. The average salary of a cybersecurity specialist is $99,652, according to Search “cyber security specialist $100,000” on LinkedIn and you find a cornucopia of high-paying jobs cybersecurity specialist program from across the country. What awaits you is fun, challenging work that will keep your mind occupied and, at times, your heart beating fast. You will develop valuable connections with like-minded security professionals, and you will work together to create the most robust security solutions there are.

Cyber Security Specialist

They can be independent security consultants hired to determine an organization’s weaknesses to prevent future cyberattacks. If you’ve already earned CompTIA Network+ and have at least two years of experience in IT administration with a cybersecurity focus, you are a good candidate for CompTIA Security+. Where you choose to get your degree is totally up to you and based on your needs. If you are a career changer and already working a full-time job that’s not in the tech sphere, an online degree could work best as it will be the most flexible option. For full-time students or those who haven’t started establishing their work history, a residential degree program could be a better fit.

Sometimes both a degree and cybersecurity certifications are required for cybersecurity specialists – but that’s not always the case. Cybersecurity jobs are in high demand right now and employers are realizing that they need to be open to alternative paths to knowledge and experience in order to fill these positions. Relevant certifications can give job seekers a competitive advantage and help them prove to employers that they have in-demand information security skills.

Key Soft Skills for Security Specialists

As experts in cybersecurity, these specialists help to create, analyze and deploy organizational security systems. Cybersecurity specialists test for areas of potential exposure in interconnected computer networks, document their findings and provide solutions for vulnerabilities. Those who are drawn to this profession will understandably have some questions about the salary range and career prospects. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) provides information for the information security analyst role, which is very similar to the cybersecurity specialist role.

what is a cybersecurity specialist

Traditionally, network operations and IT professionals and teams handled core technology functions. But now that our world has become so heavily dependent on using advanced technology for practically everything, the stakes are higher than ever. You will need to possess a wide range of technical, analytical, communication, and computer skills. As with all other IT security job roles, you also need to keep up with all the latest technology news and security recommendations as a consultant. If you’ve heard of white hat hackers hired to attempt and breach an organization’s security measures using their hacking skills and software – those would be penetration testers.

Is a Certification or a Degree Required to Become a Cybersecurity Specialist?

They are also responsible for anticipating future threats and advising on how to deal with them. Explore this page to learn how factors like location, education, and work experience affect the salary and career outlook for security specialists. Having a range of relevant cybersecurity certifications under your belt is a huge bonus, regardless of whether or not you hold a degree. They use an array of tools and techniques to strengthen an organization’s information security and safeguard its IT infrastructure and data. If you consistently network on LinkedIn, you may find that job opportunities will present themselves to you as you complete a degree program, earn industry certifications and get experience.

what is a cybersecurity specialist

Cybersecurity specialists must remain up to date with changes in the field by researching emerging threats and fixes. The Cyber Security Specialist must have a bachelor’s degree in computer science, information technology, telecommunications, computer engineering, or any related field. Some organizations prefer candidates with prior and relevant work experience and a master’s degree or a particular specialization. They are responsible for making sure that networks and computer systems are up-to-date and not vulnerable to software bugs. Read this guide to learn about the professional certifications that can help security specialists secure higher paying jobs and promotions. Even if you don’t have a relevant college degree or a certification, clearly showcasing what you’re good at might be enough to land you an entry-level position at a cybersecurity firm.

What’s a Cybersecurity Specialist? ¶

Third, the global shortage of cybersecurity workers is expected to continue, which will drive up wages and salaries for cybersecurity specialists. According to Payscale, security specialists with 10 or more years of experience earned an average annual salary of $98,389 as of September 2021. Cyber Security Specialists are responsible for providing security for an organization’s overall IT systems. They search for vulnerabilities in software, hardware, networks, and data centers and design strategies and defensive systems to protect against attacks and threats. Cyber security specialists are in demand with a continued growth projection and a robust salary. This profession will continue to evolve as technology advances and as new security concerns continue to develop.

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