The need for cybersecurity talent is greater than ever before, and it’s not likely to decrease anytime soon. Many businesses are feeling pressure from an ever-growing number of potential threats, and are motivated to locate professionals who can help safeguard their organization from digital damage.
For cybersecurity professionals and those considering the field, there’s no better time than now to sharpen and grow a cybersecurity skill set.
While there are a number of specializations in the field of cybersecurity, all cybersecurity professionals need certain foundational skills. These baseline skills, that all people in the industry should have, include risk management, networking basics, situational awareness, and toolkit maintenance.
Because risk drives companies to set up security measures, an understanding of risk management is essential for all cybersecurity professionals. Understanding risk management also helps cyber security professionals make a business case for their decisions and their value.
A company’s network is the foundation of its digital ecosystem. Therefore, cybersecurity professionals must have a working knowledge of TCP/IP to be able to do their work.
Situational awareness allows cybersecurity professionals to understand their work with respect to time and the unavoidable evolution of technology. Instead of remaining stuck in the past, the work of cybersecurity professionals must keep pace with the rate of threat evolution.
Finally, all cybersecurity professionals must keep their toolkit of technical skills updated and understand the limitations of their knowledge. It’s also critical for a security professional to rapidly familiarize themselves with a company’s specialized tools.
A security analyst watches the company’s network and computing ecosystem for weaknesses and helps recognize any viable threats. They are able to offer help to architects and testers as needed.
Security analysts must be able to study and sustain an understanding of known threats, as well as be able to recognize the characteristics of various threats. They should be able to determine where a threat comes from, the vectors it takes and the kind of damage it can do.
These professionals should also be able to spot weaknesses in a system, analyze security data and determine how to protect a company against emerging threats.
An incident responder deals with anything from minor break-ins to large-scale catastrophes. Their principal goal is to reduce the event’s results and bring back normal operations.
To protect the continuity of operations, an incident responder must know how to shift essential systems to alternate locations or restore data from backups rapidly and efficiently. These professionals should also be able to participate in a forensic investigation, which may mean identifying and eliminating issues while maintaining the integrity of digital evidence.
Security architects have a protective role inside the company’s cybersecurity system. They build and sustain the security controls that are set up to prevent an attack before it occurs or to slow an attack and mitigate its effects.
These professionals must be knowledgeable about access control processes and user account management concepts, network configuration and how to create baselines to use as a standard for configuring servers, databases and other systems.
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