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Career Paths For Cybersecurity In 2021

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By: Shimon Brathwaite

July 12, 2021

Cybersecurity has become one of the most profitable and growing industries of the 21st Century. Globally there are about 3.5 million unfilled cybersecurity jobs, which means there's tons of opportunity for people to make a living within this field. Many people don't understand what a career in cybersecurity is like, making it a difficult industry to break into. Cybersecurity is essential working to protect companies from all types of cyberattacks. This means protecting web applications, computer networks, individuals' machines and doing all of the work required to resolve a data breach when it happens. You can take several different career paths, and it's important because you could specialize early. The faster you can establish yourself as an expert in a niche. The faster and easier your career will advance. Here are some of the top career specializations for cybersecurity:

Computer Forensics

Computer forensics is the process of acquiring digital data from computer systems. Whenever a crime is committed, there can be valuable knowledge on digital devices. This knowledge can be GPS location, logs showing user activity, text messages, or even online dairies. As a computer forensic specialist, you will be responsible for acquiring this evidence on behalf of your clients. You can work for law enforcement for court cases or work in the private sector following a company hack or employee misconduct.

Network Security

A network is simply a connected set of computer systems. To protect a company's network, you need to have the proper security technologies such as firewalls and anti-virus solutions, a good network architecture; and constantly monitoring the network for intrusion signs. As a network security professional, you would be responsible for implementing these solutions.

Incident Response

Incident responders are responsible for resolving security incidents whenever they occur. One analogy people use is to call them "Firefighters" because whenever something bad happens in cybersecurity, it's their job to investigate and resolve the issue. This usually means working with upper management and even C-level executives because you need people who have the power to make decisions.

Threat Intelligence

The niche of threat intelligence is all about gathering actionable information that will help drive the rest of the company's cybersecurity operations. For example, a threat intelligence analyst would be responsible for monitoring online news sources for the latest cybersecurity vulnerabilities that hackers are exploiting. This information would be passed on to the teams within the company for patching. It's up to the threat intelligence team to find that useful information to make informed decisions.

Cloud Security

Cloud security is more as less as it sounds. It's specializing in securing a company's cloud infrastructure. Much like network security, this means setting up the proper network infrastructure, ensuring the proper security technology is in place, and monitoring the network. Additionally, you are responsible for building out redundant systems to ensure that the company's services are always up and running.

Identity and Access Management (IAM)

IAM is sure that users only have the access they need to perform their job and nothing more. This is the principle of least privilege. It aims to ensure that no one was inappropriate access that can be used to harm the company or its customers.

Penetration Testing

This niche is essentially being a full-time computer hacker. Your job is to think like a hacker would and attempt to hack into your client's network or application to expose the flaws and weaknesses in its security. Based on your work, the client can go back and figure out what they need to change.

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