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How to get into cyber security

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I get a lot of questions on how someone should get in the cybersecurity field, but just to start with the start, the field of cybersecurity is very wide.

For example, you can become a professional in:

  • Information gathering
  • Vulnerability analysis
  • Wireless attacks
  • Web Applications
  • Exploitation
  • Stress testing
  • Forensics
  • Incident Response
  • Reverse Engineering
  • Hardware Hacking
  • Reporting
  • Programming

There are lots of opportunities and challenges to be picked up, and the right question should be:

what type of challenges do you want to tackle?

Working in the cyber security field comes with an incredible amount of responsibility and it is needed in each organization. The pays are good but you should not just do it for the money – do it for the challenges.

So the chance is big that you are not in the IT business, but you are interested in the cyber security field, that is all fine, but do understand, there is a lot to catch up with, and if you are up for that challenge, you will have a great time doing so.

If you would ask someone directly on how to get in the cyber security field, they would say that you need to:

  • Get work experience
  • Study
  • Network
  • Get qualified

Believe it or not, they are right, but it is not just the above that matters, you have the challenge yourself on a daily basis to stay ahead of the cybercriminals and threat actors you are trying to protect the world against. Keep in mind that you have to give something back to the community, you can do this by giving lectures, workshops, trainings and talks or simply helping your neighbor setup their WiFi securely.

There are some other ways like:

  • Get an undergraduate degree that is technical – whatever you like the most
  • Start learning everything you can about cyber security, which will mostly be on the Internet. Set up a lab and try to self-teach yourself as much as possible.
  • Learn python and build some utilities/tools in cyber security that you can show to prospective employees.
  • Navigate through the Kali Linux tools and test them out.
  • Learn Linux and set up open source tools that mimic the enterprise tools (firewalls, IDS/IPS, netflow, packet capture, forensic analysis, etc.).
  • Get an internship with a company involving cyber security and show them the path you have taken

The above has to give you some points to focus on, but always remember the following:

You have more to offer than just your technical expertise

Try to understand the business, seek for methods on how you can help the company to increase revenue and quality of work.

Another important skillset is the data analysis skills, Forbes states that:

“In cybersecurity, it’s critical to be competent at noticing trends in large amounts of data–so if you’re coming from a background in big data, you’ll be well set up. If you don’t come from that background, it’s well worth taking a course in it and getting some real experience collecting and analyzing large amounts of information.”

Be sure to checkout the How To section, there you will find lots of tutorials and guides that will help you advance in the cyber security field.

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