Cybersecurity as an industry has exploded since the turn of the century – and the global COVID pandemic has pushed it even further, with organizations investing a lot of money into technology to enable workers to work remotely – and you can learn remotely, too. You might be wondering, “what are my cybersecurity career path options?” Fortunately, there are plenty of cybersecurity career path options in today’s market.
Deloitte reported three times as many cyber attacks in Switzerland during the year of the pandemic than any other year, making cybersecurity a vital career path.
There has never been a better time to consider a cybersecurity career path.
What Is Cybersecurity?
Cybersecurity is the application of various technologies, programs, and controls to protect computers from cyber attacks, aiming to prevent breaches of data and other means of exploitation via computer systems.
In the 1970s and 80s computer systems were in their early stages of development and computer security threats were easily identified – most breaches of security were by insiders gaining access to documents.
Fast forward to 2023 and the scale of computer development and our digital world is enormous – and so is the need to protect the more advanced systems of today.
4 Reasons to Consider a Cybersecurity Career Path
There are numerous reasons to consider a career path in cybersecurity in 2023.
Employment rates are sky-high
There is a huge demand for workers in the cybersecurity industry – even back in 2016, the unemployment rate for cybersecurity workers was zero percent. And the demand is only growing! You can be assured of opportunities for growth in virtually any organization.
As the internet and technology have developed, so has cybercrime. When defenses against cyberattacks grow more robust, cybercrime gets smarter and there is always something to learn.
While there is growth in technology, there will be growth in cybercrime – and personal, almost unlimited growth in the industry. This means that your cybersecurity career could be incredibly rewarding both financially and personally.
There are already many programs, systems, and technologies that cybersecurity professionals have to contend with – and it doesn’t stop there.
Cyber professionals can be utilized in any number of positions, with high-tech cars, machinery, and websites all requiring cyber protection – you can be assured of a huge variety on offer.
The role of cybersecurity is vital for pretty much every organization in the world – and it has real-world connotations. Cybercrime such as fraud and stolen identity are just two examples of how online crime affects real life.
Cybersecurity is an important industry for billions of people’s financial and personal well-being worldwide, which is why the role can be so exciting and rewarding.
The Five Main Cybersecurity Career Types
1. Network Security
Network security protects an organization’s network and data against security breaches, cyber-attacks, and other intrusions such as viruses.
2. Cloud Security
Cloud security is how cloud-based data, networks, and applications are protected from cyber threats and security breaches.
3. Application Security
Application security is the development of security features for applications to prevent security weaknesses against threats, including outside modification of the apps and further breaches.
4. Critical Infrastructure Security
Critical Infrastructure security is the protection of systems, networks, and assets that continually need to operate to sustain the security of a nation – such as the economy and public health.
5. Internet of Things (IoT) Security
Internet of things security refers to the recent growth in interconnected devices and objects using the same network – home systems that operate as a ‘smart home’ with various appliances throughout the house being linked to a smartphone – and how to protect against data breaches and other cyber threats to these networks.
Cybersecurity Career Paths: From Junior to Senior Roles
Entry-Level Cybersecurity Jobs
Entry-level roles to consider when beginning your cybersecurity career path are many. It’s important to note that ‘entry level’ may mean different things for different organizations, depending on their level of security needed.
- Information security analyst – This role monitors and investigates networks for security breaches, researching IT trends and helping computer users with various programs and security needs.
- Digital forensic investigator – Testing software such as antivirus and firewalls, conducting security training, and suggesting improvements to security vulnerabilities.
- IT auditor – Planning, undertaking, and presenting results on audits, designing plans to fix any security weaknesses, and helping make systems more efficient
Mid-Level Cybersecurity Jobs
Mid-level cybersecurity jobs are often more specialized, advanced roles once those early years of experience have enhanced your skill set to take the next step.
- Penetration tester – Pen tester for short, this role conducts imitation attacks on internal systems to check for weaknesses and provides technical support when incidents occur
- Security engineer – This important role ensures that a company’s network, devices, and data are safe against everything from data breaches to natural disasters, tests systems regularly and thoroughly, and helps develop best practices
- Security systems administrator – This job involves monitoring systems and developing security systems, audits, and managing individual user accounts
Senior-Level Cybersecurity Jobs
The top level of cybersecurity involves a high level of responsibility within certain organizations.
- Cybersecurity manager – This leadership role oversees the entire security infrastructure of an organization, managing all technical resources and leading risk management
- Bug bounty specialist – This unique job is an exciting role where you take on the role of a hacker, with the end goal of beating cybercriminals at their own game to better protect organizations
- Security architect – Another important role in any organization is responsible for setting the standards and policies – and implementing them – against all security threats.
3 Ways to Plan Your Cybersecurity Career Path
Planning your cybersecurity career path depends on where you’re starting. If you’re a complete newcomer, don’t worry – there are many courses, qualifications, and bootcamps out there to set you on your way.
Many qualifications and certifications are available in the cybersecurity world, even for complete beginners. You can immerse yourself in the world with a series of courses, books, podcasts, and more.
Get into the industry & continue to learn
Once you’ve gotten into the industry there’s so much still to learn – whichever organization you’re in and whatever team you’re working with, the world of cybersecurity is constantly evolving. Make sure you stay in the know and keep ahead of the curve.
Specialize and climb
The key thing to think about is where you want your career to go – and there’s no right or wrong. There are many avenues and pathways to take and you can choose to specialize (for example, in cybercrime prevention) or be an all-encompassing cybersecurity guru.
Top 5 Most In-Demand Cybersecurity Skills
1. Risk assessment
Cybersecurity has a lot to do with risk, threats, and how to manage and mitigate them. You’ll need to be proficient at assessing risks to minimize the threat to your organization.
As with coding, a knowledge of the system platforms such as Linux widely in use is key to landing that cybersecurity role – and continued learning of them and their advancing tech is a must.
4. Digital forensics
Increasing digital security is the main goal for many cybersecurity career pathways and a lot of roles focus on threat prevention – but attacks do happen. Knowing how to investigate these cyberattacks, understand them, and prevent them from occurring in the future is a core skill.
It is important to remember that even in the cybersecurity world, it all comes down to human beings. Risks to systems and networks come from other humans – so understanding and empathizing with human beings will be key to your work in the cyber world.
What Is the Average Cybersecurity Starting Salary?
The average cybersecurity starting salary is around $87,000 – with average salaries in the industry at around $105,000. Not only is the industry varied and exciting, but it’s lucrative, too.
What Is the Cybersecurity Job Outlook in 2023?
As previously stated, the cybersecurity industry is constantly growing and there is a global demand for workers. Almost every organization needs some level of cybersecurity in 2023, and with cyber threats constantly evolving, there will always be work available.
Do You Need a Cybersecurity Degree?
While it may be desirable for certain organizations, you don’t need a cybersecurity degree to get a job in the industry. You can start your cybersecurity career path in many ways – such as with online certifications, bootcamps like ours at Coding Dojo, and using free resources online.
Why Learn Cybersecurity at Coding Dojo
There are many cybersecurity courses, degrees, and certifications out there for you to take the next steps toward your cybersecurity career path. Here at Coding Dojo, we offer a rigorous 24-week program to get you job-ready, earn your certifications and learn hands-on experience.
What’s more, we offer a unique scientific approach to learning that guarantees success for our students – and you can be one of them.
Whatever stage of your cybersecurity career path you’re on, Coding Dojo can help you unlock your potential to reach the next level.
As we’ve said, the industry is calling out for workers around the globe, so there is no limit to what you can achieve – financial, personal, and professional success is yours for the taking.