Why should you consider a career in cybersecurity? Other than the satisfaction of keeping the world safe from digital destruction, cybersecurity is a field where opportunities are increasing quicker than the availability of skilled professionals, and businesses are concerned that the shortage of talent is making it difficult to secure their operations. Recent news about cybersecurity jobs include
- 92% of surveyed organisations believe that demand for technical cybersecurity individual contributors will increase next year
- Entry-level positions have salaries in the Rs. 3-6 lakh range, and senior professionals can earn Rs. 50-80 lakhs
The increase in demand for cybersecurity talent is driven both by the relentless increase in cyberattacks and cybersecurity mandates from regulatory bodies, such as the Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) requiring Stock Exchanges, Clearing Corporations, and Depositories to conduct regular vulnerability scanning.
We have seen why you should build a career in cybersecurity. Now let us examine how.
How You Can Enter the Cybersecurity Industry
Cybersecurity is a field that involves specific skills, and therefore requires specialised education and training. Entering this industry, and building a career, will be easier if you first research and plan, and then execute your plan.
Understand All the Opportunities Available
Cybersecurity is not a single skill or qualification. You may make your career in Vulnerability Assessment and Penetration Testing (VAPT), or you may prefer malware analysis, or choose any other domain within cybersecurity. To choose your path, you will first need to map the opportunities available – or at least study the map, as it has already been created. This map proves that cybersecurity is a vast world with a wide variety of opportunities that keep expanding. Research the industry and understand its various domains and roles; you will be able to find your niche no matter where your interests lie, due to the diversity of available opportunities.
Develop Foundational Skills
Cybersecurity revolves around computing technology and you will need a sound understanding of the digital technology ecosystem. Being good at mathematics and programming will help you advance in this field, and you will also need to be familiar with the components of digital technology infrastructure, such as networking, operating systems, and data storage, as these areas are attacked by threat actors and you will need to understand this infrastructure to defend this infrastructure.
Develop Cybersecurity Skills
We have already mentioned that cybersecurity requires specialised education and training. It follows that such training can only be obtained from specialised training centres. Universities and other centres of learning provide courses in cybersecurity. When choosing an institution, look for training centres that are affiliated with cybersecurity organisations and can provide hands-on experience with the cybersecurity tools that you will be expected to use in your cybersecurity career. Being able to work with malware samples will also give you vital experience in isolating, handling, and analysing malware, which are skills you will need when you defend organisations against cyberattacks. An institution that also performs malware research is preferred as you will be exposed to the latest malware and the Tactics, Techniques, and Procedures (TTPs) used by cyberattackers.
K7 Academy provides industry-aligned cybersecurity training with malware research and hands-on exposure to industry tools.
Familiarise Yourself with Standards and Regulations
Cybersecurity is not just a technical field – it is also an essential part of compliance. The organisation that you wish to join may need to comply with GDPR, HIPAA, or PCI-DSS, or may choose to implement the NIST Cybersecurity Framework or adhere to ISO 27001. Familiarising yourself with common cybersecurity standards and regulations will make you a better fit for the requirements of potential employers.
Gain Real-world Expertise
There is nothing like rolling up your sleeves and working on stopping an actual cyberattack to teach you the nuances of creating effective cyber defences – and employers know this, which is why they look for experienced candidates. On-the-job experience can be acquired through internships where you can develop the real-world skills required to counter cyberattacks on a daily basis. Look for cybersecurity courses, such as the courses from K7 Academy, that offer such internships.
Follow Cybersecurity News
Having up-to-date knowledge is essential for career growth, and is particularly important in cybersecurity where cyberthreats, cyber defences, and regulations are constantly evolving. Following cybersecurity news is an easy way to be familiar with the latest ways in which threat actors compromise organisations and the measures that are developed to counter them.
Develop Problem Solving Skills
A cyberattack is a problem that a cybersecurity professional is expected to solve and therefore problem solving skills are highly valued in this industry. The ability to analyse situations, harness critical thinking to identify weaknesses in technology ecosystems, and employ logic when faced with a cybersecurity incident can be developed through practise. Cyber defence is a form of detective work, and you must learn to think like a detective.
Develop Communication Skills
When all functions in an enterprise become digitally enabled, the entire enterprise becomes vulnerable to cyberattacks and cybersecurity professionals will need to interact with stakeholders at various seniority levels across all departments. The ability to communicate effectively, in speech and in writing, and the ability to receive communication well, by listening and reading attentively, will help you be, and be perceived as being, a highly capable cyber defender.
K7 Academy helps aspiring cybersecurity professionals gain job-aligned certifications with hands-on learning programmes that utilise real-world cyberthreats. Contact Us to learn more about how you can access satisfying and rewarding careers in cybersecurity.