Cybersecurity is a top priority for businesses around the world — and for good reason. Hackers use malware, ransomware, and other advanced cyber attacks to penetrate IT networks and systems. Without proper security measures in place, businesses risk data breaches, along with associated brand reputation damage and revenue losses.
Hackers have shown no signs of slowing down any time soon. Now, businesses need skilled cybersecurity professionals who can help them keep pace with emerging cyber threats. So, if you pursue cybersecurity jobs, you may find a wealth of opportunities at your disposal.
Reasons to Pursue a Career in Cybersecurity
The cybersecurity sector offers many opportunities to job seekers of all skill and experience levels. Reasons to pursue a career in cybersecurity include:
1. You Can Earn a Competitive Salary.
On average, U.S. cybersecurity professionals earn an annual salary of $103,000. Comparatively, the median household income in the United States was $68,703 as of 2019.
Meanwhile, a cybersecurity skills shortage currently plagues global companies. This shortage has driven demand for cybersecurity talent. As such, those who possess cybersecurity education and training are in high demand. And, they are well-equipped to maximize their earnings in cybersecurity.
2. You Can Explore a Wide Range of Jobs.
A cybersecurity specialist can pursue many job opportunities. Some of the top cybersecurity jobs include:
- Analyst: Identifies cyber threats and determines the best course of action to address them.
- Engineer: Builds and maintains systems that protect organizations against cyberattacks.
- Penetration Tester: Conducts assessments to find out how hackers can attack an organization and offers recommendations to mitigate security weaknesses.
Global businesses frequently seek out entry-level cybersecurity professionals, such as analysts or engineers. These companies may offer training, bonuses, and other perks to stir up interest from cybersecurity job seekers as well.
You can earn myriad certifications in cybersecurity, too. The more cybersecurity certifications you earn, the more job opportunities you can pursue across the sector.
3. You Can Feel Great About Your Everyday Work.
Cybersecurity professionals are tasked with stopping cyberattacks. To achieve this goal, they work diligently to detect and resolve security vulnerabilities. Or, if a cyberattack happens, these professionals ensure appropriate stakeholders are notified about the incident and steps are taken to prevent it from becoming a recurring problem.
The bottom line: cybersecurity professionals make a difference within their respective organizations. If you want to do your part to combat hackers on a day-to-day basis, a career in cybersecurity can provide an excellent option.
What Are the Top Challenges for Cybersecurity Professionals?
Cybersecurity can provide a rewarding career path. But, it is important to note that cybersecurity professionals can encounter challenges as they pursue their career aspirations.
Common challenges for cybersecurity professionals include:
1. Demanding Hours
Research indicates that most cybersecurity professionals work more than 40 hours a week. There is no telling when a cyberattack will occur or how long it will take to resolve the issue. Therefore, cybersecurity professionals often remain on call. If a cyberattack occurs outside of normal business hours, these professionals are expected to respond to the incident right away.
2. Limited Resources
Cybersecurity professionals may be asked to secure a company’s IT infrastructure, although limited resources are available.
These professionals can work with different departments to secure a business’ IT infrastructure, but they may receive little to no support from these departments. Thus, cybersecurity pros must be proactive to help their business guard against cyberattacks 24/7.
3. Constant Learning
The Internet of Things (IoT) and other emerging technologies are changing the way businesses operate. Cybersecurity professionals must keep pace with these technologies and the dangers associated with them. This ensures that a company can leverage advanced technologies without putting its IT networks and systems at risk.
Yet, committing the time, energy, and resources to stay in the loop regarding new technologies can be overwhelming for cybersecurity pros. It can even cause these pros to feel exhausted and burned out from their work.
How to Determine If a Career in Cybersecurity is Right for You
For those who are considering a career in cybersecurity, weigh the pros and cons closely. Make a list of advantages and disadvantages associated with a cybersecurity career, and you can determine if this option aligns with your personal and professional aspirations.
As you decide whether to pursue a career in cybersecurity, consider the following questions:
- What do I want to accomplish in my career? Think about your career to date. If you are ready for a new career doing something different, it may be an ideal time to consider cybersecurity job opportunities.
- What skills do I need to be successful in cybersecurity? The best cybersecurity professionals are generally problem-solvers and critical thinkers. They also can work independently or as part of a team, have strong communication skills, and want to learn as much as they can.
- What education will I need? Earning a college or university degree can provide a terrific starting point toward a career in cybersecurity. You can explore higher education degree programs at a local college or university or online. Also, you can enroll in cybersecurity certification programs and workshops.
If you are still on the fence about pursuing a career in cybersecurity, meet with an industry professional. You can connect with cybersecurity pros via LinkedIn, colleges and universities, and other sources. Next, you can learn what it is like to work in cybersecurity from these industry professionals.
Build Your Cybersecurity Resume
Before you pursue a cybersecurity job, you need a resume that hits the mark with prospective employers. With the right approach, you can use your resume to showcase your skill set. Plus, you can make it easy for potential employers to see you are the right candidate for a cybersecurity job.
Here are five tips to help you craft and optimize your cybersecurity resume:
- Describe your skills. Review a cybersecurity job posting and the skills an employer wants in its ideal candidate. You can then include details about how your skills match the employer’s expectations.
- Use cybersecurity terms and phrases. If possible, incorporate relevant industry terms and phrases into your resume.
- Be clear, concise, and direct. Resist the urge to use long paragraphs to outline your education, experience, and goals. Conversely, keep your resume brief and to the point.
- Format your resume. Avoid any fonts that otherwise make it difficult to read your resume on a mobile device or desktop or laptop computer. Ensure there is ample white space between different sections of your resume, too.
- Proofread your resume. Look for any grammatical errors across your resume. Correct any mistakes you find immediately.
Tailor your cybersecurity resume to the job you want to land as well. This boosts the likelihood that your resume will show a potential employer you can fill a cybersecurity role within their business.
Ready to Launch Your Cybersecurity Career? Get Started Today
Cybersecurity is a fast-growing field, and it provides many career opportunities to job seekers globally. If you want to launch a cybersecurity career, now is a wonderful time to do just that.
As you seek out cybersecurity jobs, remain persistent. Many companies want cybersecurity professionals and are actively recruiting them. If you stay the course during your cybersecurity job search, you can find a job that suits you perfectly. And, once you land your ideal cybersecurity job, you can build a successful career in the industry.
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Ainsley Lawrence is a writer who loves to talk about good health, balanced life, and better living through technology. She is frequently lost in a good book.