Protecting precious data and shielding computer networks from evil groups. It can share a lyrical resemblance with a plot of an espionage novel. Though it may sound like a slight exaggeration, careers in cybersecurity offer very much the same – that too on a regular basis. As the second week’s theme for National Cyber Security Awareness Month in October is educating for a career in cybersecurity, it’s worth to throw a light on the actual nature and possibilities of cybersecurity jobs.
The gravity of cybercrime can be gauged from the Cybercrime Report’s finding that cybercrime damages are predicted to cost the world $6 trillion annually by 2021. The same report also mentions that to curb the menace of cybercrime, cybersecurity spending is expected to reach more than $1 trillion. This spending cannot be put in the ring of proper use without mobilizing people with the right skills. That’s precisely where cybersecurity can act as a goldmine for job seekers.
But it’s always better to know every brick before building a wall with it. More than other typical career options, this prerequisite applies mirror-reflectively to cybersecurity careers. It’s mainly due to their unconventional and yet-to-establish nature. Before deciding to traverse a cybersecurity career path, thus, it’s wise to know what you are opting for in entirety. There are certain things which you must possess in your knowledge.
Subscribe now for valuable insights!
A) The Rise and Rise in Demand:
The commonality of cyber attacks is visible even to naked eyes. With 230,000 new malware samples entering per day, there is a hacker attack every 39 seconds – affecting one in three Americans each year. Their countering calls for a strong front of skilled cyber experts. That’s what keeps cybersecurity jobs in hot demand all the time, and this won’t go anywhere in the foreseeable future. By 2021, cybersecurity jobs will grow to 3.5 million openings. In fact, the Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts that the rate of growth for jobs in information security is projected at 37% from 2012–2022. Note that that’s much faster than the average for all other occupations. Considering the talent crunch in the cybersecurity, candidate search will become more intense and expansive.
B) Non-Following of Standards:
Cybersecurity is still in the wild west stages. Unlike other industries, it’s relatively less established. What this means is an undefined path to enter and grow. As the field of security has evolved as an offshoot of IT, it’s not uncommon to see that security analysts have done entry-level IT jobs like network administration or programming.
However, this non-established nature has its own silver lining for newcomers. The unconventional ways of operating can weave up an ecosystem that favors merit and technical knowledge over experience. It is not to devalue the experience. But lacking it will not snatch away opportunities from youngsters.
C) Proactivism Will Hold the Key:
Whether to grab an entry-level position or to climb up the hierarchical ladder, you must have a proactive mindset. This field isn’t suited for people who want to earn some degree, get a job and sit back in cruise control. You will have to carve a niche for yourself by channelizing the right opportunities.
The easiest way to prove your worth to employers is to get hold of important industry certifications. But more than certification, what will work for you is the first-hand actual work experience. As Michael Gregg of Superior Solutions Inc., says, “Get all of the experience you can. If you cannot find an opening, look for opportunities to volunteer your services to gain experience. Keep eyes on local organizations dedicated to information security. Try to build your experience and professional network.”
D) CISO Demand:
50% to 70% of large companies globally have a dedicated CISO (chief information security officer) today. The recent Annual Cybersecurity Jobs Report posits that 100% of large companies will have a CISO by 2021. Considering the scarcity of experienced people in cybersecurity, we will see a lot of first-time CISOs taking the charge of companies’ security prospects. For entrants, this is a sign of encouragement.
Let’s dive into the actual job positions along with their respective remunerations.
1) Lead Software Security Engineer:
Graded as number one in CIO’s list of the 10 jobs with the highest cyber security salary, a lead software engineer makes an average annual salary of $233,333. The concerned person is responsible for leading a team of security experts, analyzing and assessing risks, developing secure software and identifying vulnerabilities.
Average Annual Salary: $233,333
3) Security Architect:
A security architect oversees threats and recommends solutions to protect information and data. He/she may have to look into the development of security hardware and software, oversee and educate staff on security policies, design security models and install VPNs, firewalls, and more.
Annual Salary Range: $81,845 – $147,873
2) Chief Information Security Officer (CISO):
The person holding this position takes care of developing, implementing and maintaining security processes that protect a company from threats and risks.
Average Annual Salary: $192,500
4) Forensics Expert:
A forensic expert is liable to investigate cyber attacks and identify flaws in the system which enabled the security breach.
Annual Salary Range: $55,703 – $119,079.