The work of a penetration tester is well known. Penetration testing is just a sub-part of a much larger role. Unbeknownst to many, there exist many other popular in-demand jobs in the cybersecurity world. Take a look at them and decide which best suits you.
IT security specialist: Pretty much everything requires protection. That’s where an IT specialist comes up. The holder of this post has the task of guarding systems from unauthorized access and damage, ensure security requirements are implemented, install security updates and tools such as firewalls, intrusion detection systems, anti-virus software as well as give security advice to colleagues. Just like with every job, there are certain skills which employers will like to see:
- Penetration-testing abilities.
- Basic programming knowledge in languages like C/C++, Python, Java, PHP or C.
- Security Information and Event Management.
- Knowledge of anti-malware and security software.
- Experience with Windows, Linux, Mac operating systems.
If you need any incentive to train yourself for this post, note that the annual salary ranges from $45,481 – $114,105.
Security analyst: The name is self-explanatory. Data integrity is maintained by a security analyst. Security analysts ensure that company data is kept away from unauthorized prying eyes by analyzing the system for any loopholes or vulnerabilities, and taking steps to fix said loopholes. Security analysts work hand in hand with the administrators by reporting all discoveries to them so immediate effect can be taken. The median salary is around $92,000 annually.
- Checking systems to prevent intrusions and identifying threats.
- Penetration testing. This is a part of ethical hacking whereby threats and vulnerabilities in a system are analyzed. Security analysts will check applications, networks, websites etc.
- Collecting and analyzing data. Collected data can be checked and matched later in case of a data breach
- Ability to reverse engineer such that an analyst understands to analyze and fix malware issues.
Security engineer: Security engineers are tasked with safe-guarding data. They check risks, scan for vulnerabilities and maximize security features. They identify risks and suggest ways to tackle such problems. These engineers ensure that all software and hardware related to security are up-to date. They are also very informed on the latest cyber risks, vulnerabilities and patches so as to take swift action. Annually, the average salary for a security engineer is over $98,000.
Skills of a security engineer includes:
- Experience with Windows, Linux (And other UNIX-based) operating systems.
- Knowledge of anti-malware and security software, as well as firewalls and Intrusion Detection Systems.
- Desire to keep up-to-date with latest cyber-security trends.
A few other in-demand sub-branches under the security engineer field includes:
Application security engineer: Handles applications (software).
Network security engineer: Deals with networks.
It should be noted that every company has specific criteria when hiring, so the above listed skills are not guaranteed to make one eligible for a job in the particular field. Also, an IT-related certificate increases one’s chances of being hired. So do credible certifications from organizations like Microsoft and Cisco, as well as many other certifications like CISSP, GISP, and CISM.