What Skills Are Needed For Cybersecurity?
Are you eyeing a career in cybersecurity? Do you want to help organizations guard against cybersecurity attacks? Cybersecurity is a sought after, quickly developing field that needs qualified professionals today more than ever. Cybersecurity careers typically offer high pay and a wide variety of opportunities for career advancement — in addition to the exciting challenges of a tech-based workplace.
If you're intrigued by the possibility of a career in cybersecurity, it's time to dive into the field. Cybersecurity professionals fulfill a wide variety of professions. While some cyber experts help build and protect organizational networks, other cyber pros spend time helping companies identify system vulnerabilities. Other internal-facing cybersecurity professionals might have educational roles, helping a company's employees implement cybersecurity best practices. No matter your unique skill set, you can find a home in the cybersecurity world.
Anyone seeking a job in the cybersecurity field will need a wide set of technical, practical and and professional skills. You'll also need to build certain soft skills that today's cybersecurity employers are often looking for. We've provided a rundown of some of the top hard and soft cybersecurity skills below.
You'll need a variety of soft skills to qualify for a career in cybersecurity. Among other soft skills, you'll need patience when educating other members of your organization who might not understand basic cybersecurity principles or how to implement them.
The soft skills you might need for your next cyber profession can include:
- Solid communications skills to adequately speak with executives and clients
- Capacity to plainly express complex ideas (both written and verbally)
- Undivided attention skills
- Enthusiasm to dive into technical issues and inspect them from all possible angles
- Eagerness and versatility
- Solid explanatory and demonstrative abilities
- Strong knowledge of general cybersecurity vulnerabilities
By exercising your soft skills in a cybersecurity profession, you can help connect organizations with solutions that keep them safe from attacks to their networks and technological infrastructure. These same soft skills also help you effectively work together with others and commit yourself to your tasks on a daily basis.
Alongside a variety of soft skills, you'll also need to depend on various hard skills in your position as a cybersecurity professional. Among other abilities, you'll need proficiency in technical platform use, engineering, and network protection.
Here are a few of the must-have technical skills that virtually all cybersecurity professionals need.
A Solid Technical Knowledge Base
In a cybersecurity position, you'll need far more than your technical skills. However, technical skills are a fundamental part of your job description in any cyber role. Technical cybersecurity skills are normally divided into two categories: hands-on technical abilities and conceptual technical knowledge.
To begin, you'll need hands-on technical abilities — where you'll actually carry out the responsibility of completing any tasks or projects you're working on. This is the experience you get from the job itself. This useful technical information can include anything from network design to penetration testing to firewall introduction. These skills will understandably fluctuate on a daily basis, whether you're solving for security dangers, fulfilling software projects or working through any number of technology platforms.
The second category of technical skills you'll need is conceptual technical knowledge. This skills field includes things like knowing the port numbers of different protocols, subnetting and the layers of an OSI model. This is the technical knowledge that helps you to fulfill responsibilities above expectations.
Let’s take a look at some of the technical concepts you should understand.
Security Incident Handling And Response
A cybersecurity expert should know how to deal with any contingent danger, including digital data infringement or any other threats to an association's security arrangements or standard security practices. These security incidents could include ransomware, malware, phishing, main in the middle (MITM) attack, Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attacks, Advanced Persistent Threats and other challenges.
A cybersecurity expert should know how to navigate and manage security information and event management (SIEM) tools and administrations. as a cybersecurity professional, you should have the ability to perform automation with the SIEM and interpret real-time data from alerts, in ways that help you and teams act on comprehensive incident response strategies.
Audit And Compliance
A cybersecurity expert should know how to lead an exhaustive survey of their organization's adherence to guideline rules. These compliance protocols typically include FISMA, HIPAA, SOX, GDPR, PCI DSS, COBIT, ISO 27001 and 20000. Security audit and compliance are significant because any missed region of administrative consistency could prompt noteworthy fines and punishments for your association.
Analytics & Intelligence
A cybersecurity expert should know how to use analytics and intelligence to distinguish and identify attacks as fast as possible. Utilizing analytics and intelligence permits, cybersecurity experts should use network and application data in ways that prevent recurring cyber attacks.
Cybersecurity professionals also need to know how to use firewalls to channel traffic and forestall unapproved network access. Moreover, cybersecurity professionals should be able to navigate Intrusion Prevention Systems and Intrusion Detection Systems, and understand how they're linked to organizational firewalls.
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A cybersecurity expert should know how to operate an Intrusion Detection System, and afterward recognize any noteworthy or suspect traffic on the network — particularly traffic patterns that might represent security or policy violations.
Application Security Development
A cybersecurity expert should know how to improve the security of any application by identifying and resolving vulnerabilities. Cyber professionals should also understand how to optimize firewalls, networks, and individual computer systems in ways that discourage malware and promote security for each user. In addition, cyber professionals must test and approve the software development lifecycle (SDLC), with the goal of identifying and patching any and all vulnerabilities before applications are delivered or taken live.
Advanced Malware Prevention
A cybersecurity expert should know how to operate advanced malware prevention and software to prevent, distinguish and recognize Advanced Persistent Threats (APTs) that may bypass conventional security setups like firewalls, IPS/IDS and anti-virus protocols.
Mobile Device Management
A cybersecurity expert should know how to work with internal IT resources to secure and deploy cell phones, tablets and workstations that are already equipped to prevent data loss on behalf of all users.
Data Management Protection
A cybersecurity expert should know how to deal with, analyze and safely store a wide range of data.
A cybersecurity expert should know how to implement forensic tools and analytical strategies to discover data, anomalies and malevolent activity on an organization's network. Similarly, cyber professionals should understand how to use digital forensics to identify similar threats across company records, or in different regions of the business.
Identity & Access Management
A cybersecurity expert should know how to comprehend the prescribed procedures for Identity and Access Management (IAM) and guarantee that the security strategy exhibits a worthy use for different jobs and duties inside the association.
Read more: Why Choose Cybersecurity as a Career?
How Can I Update My Cybersecurity Skills?
There are many different ways that you can work to keep your cybersecurity abilities sharp. Here are a few of the best ways to continually polish your cyber skills.
1. News & Online Resources
Consider a number of different online resources, including media and other digital options for enhancing your cyber skills. You might also want to consult relevant cyber news outlets, for updates to cybersecurity platforms, standards or other best practices.
2. Online Communities
Online communities are a great way to learn more about a particular field, while contributing any additional knowledge you might be able to share with the group. You can join online networks, participate in a variety of different communities, join forums and follow training institutions that might also have thriving online peer groups.
3. Follow Cybersecurity Leaders
Cybersecurity is no different from any other career, in that industry leaders help to distribute information and introduce new ideas for community input. To further improve your understanding of the cybersecurity field, consider following one or more knowledgeable cybersecurity leaders. Consistent exposure to cyber leaders, their communities and their information will help further encourage you to learn even more about different cyber trends.
Taking Your Cybersecurity Skills to the Next Level
Both your hard and soft skills are absolutely necessary when pursuing a career in cybersecurity. Cyber organizations are quickly growing aware of the fact that the best cyber experts understand technology and teamwork on an equal level.
Cybersecurity is a field that offers a wide assortment of opportunities for both technical and non-technical individuals. A technical degree is no longer a prerequisite for a successful career in cybersecurity. However, to earn the career in cybersecurity that you know you deserve, you'll need some form of education.
That's where we can help. QuickStart offers best-in-class cybersecurity training through our Cybersecurity Bootcamp, led by some of the world's foremost cyber experts.