By DeVry University
Cyber security is an exciting field that is full of potential opportunity for those who want to build a career in this area. While some might consider it a hard discipline to learn, with proper preparation, cyber security can be an engaging field with exciting challenges.
To help you get ready to pursue a job in the cyber security field, we’ll help you answer the question, “is cyber security hard?" In this article, you'll have the chance to explore some of the prerequisites for a career in cyber security, get a sense of the skills you may need to work in this field and explore the different ways to pursue a cyber security career as we move through the following sections (jump to):
What Degrees are Needed for a Cyber Security Career?
The degree level you need to earn to pursue a career in cyber security or cyber security programming will depend on which career path interests you the most. It’s helpful to have a bachelor's degree, as that is typically the minimum requirement for a majority of cyber security positions, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. In certain cases, you may be able to get a job with a cyber security undergraduate certificate, though some employers may also require you to have relevant work experience in addition to the undergraduate certificate.
What Skills are Needed in Cyber Security?
To be a cyber security professional, you'll need to develop a wide range of skills related to the world of technology and IT. It may also help to have a variety of soft skills that can help you better perform basic job duties and interact with coworkers. Some of the field-related skills you'll need as a cyber security professional are:
- Programming: While you may not have to be a coding wizard to perform most cyber security jobs, a basic knowledge of programming is essential. A good eye for programming can help you identify issues with software and can even help you pinpoint cyber threats in incoming files by observing their code.
- Software comprehension: A large part of cyber security is choosing and deploying the correct software. To do this, you'll need to have a clear comprehension of how different software work and interact with one another.
- Firewalls: Firewalls are among the most important technologies used by cyber security experts. They analyze data that goes in and out of a network in order to secure it from a potential attack.
- Communication skills: As much as cyber security is a technology field, clear communication skills are essential to the job. You may need to do a lot of writing or give presentations to company higher-ups. At higher level cyber security jobs, you'll need to clearly communicate with an entire team.
- Analytical skills: Much of cyber security deals with analysis more than action. You'll have to continually look over your own work and networks to ensure that you do not have any areas of weakness in the security that you have developed. You'll also need to research new technologies and analyze the ways that they might improve your existing security.
- Attention to detail: Attention to detail is useful in any profession but especially in cyber security. By paying attention to the ever-changing world of technology, as well as close attention to your own systems, you'll be able to better identify threats and potential improvements.
How to Pursue a Career in Cyber Security
Pursuing a career in cyber security is no different than pursuing a career in any other industry. It starts with your education. In general, a degree or certificate can help you get your foot in the door, but it may also be helpful, or even required for some positions, to earn professional cyber security certifications such as the CISSP, Security+ and CISM when you’re looking for a job.
Learn about Cyber Security through Education
One of the reasons people might think that cyber security is hard is because the field is relatively new. Since it hasn't been taught in an educational setting for as long as some other disciplines, it can be considered a still-emerging field. It also comes with a continuously changing landscape and heavy reliance on up-to-date technology.
Plus, with the advent of cyber security degree programs that can be completed online, it’s easier than ever to take the first step toward earning your degree in this dynamic field.
Interested in a Cyber Security Career?
If you’re interested in learning more about cyber security, DeVry offers an Undergraduate Certificate in Cyber Security as well as Bachelor’s degree in Information Technology and Networking with a cyber security specialization or a Bachelor’s degree in Computer Information Systems with a cyber security programming specialization, each of which can be done 100% online and is designed to help you learn more about cyber security and develop your skills in this exciting field.
If you're interested in learning more, get in touch with a member of our helpful enrollment team today!