Cybercrime isn't any different from traditional crimes...right?

Criminals use your personal information or a company's data for their own gain or to cause harm.

The difference is they can gain this information physically, as in burglary or deceptive calls (traditional crimes), but they can also gain this information through a computer, as in hacking or phishing (cybercrime).

Fingerless gloved hands on a laptop keyboard. Photo by Towfiqu barbhuiya on Unsplash

With a career in cybersecurity, you can stop them!

Cybersecurity is all about protecting networks, devices, and data from these criminals. Careers in cybersecurity, like cybersecurity analysts, have been in demand since the invention of the internet because of our increasing reliance on the digital world.

If you want to start a career in cybersecurity, many questions may arise, such as:

  • What tasks are performed in cybersecurity?

  • What types of jobs are available?

  • What training is needed?

What Cybersecurity Is About

A man scanning lines of code on a computer in a dark room. Photo by Jefferson Santos on Unsplash

Cyber relates to or involves computers and/or computer networks. So, a cybersecurity analyst protects the hardware, software, and networks from threats, losses of data or information, and unauthorized access.

Flaticon Icon Cybersecurity analysts monitor networks for security threats, such as:

  • Attempts to access personal or classified information

  • Password intrusions (someone attempting to guess passwords)

  • Real-time incidents of cyber crimes

  • Vulnerabilities in systems and networks

Flaticon Icon Cybersecurity analysts may also:

  • Work alone or with a team to develop best practices

  • Perform risk assessments

  • Conduct research related to security threats

  • Create or update security protocols

  • Perform tests on computer systems

  • Identify potential security risks

  • Stop security threats

  • Repair any damage to networks and systems

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You may hear the title information security analyst used interchangeably with cybersecurity analyst.

The difference is that information security analysts not only tend to the security of data on networks but they also tend to data stored in physical places, like filing cabinets, or data that is insider employee knowledge.

Entering the Cybersecurity Field

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You'll need certifications, skills, and experience to enter cybersecurity depending on the specific career that interests you most. Entry-level careers may require only a certificate while careers such as digital forensics may require a bachelor's or master's degree in computer science.

Possible Pathways to a Cybersecurity Career

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  • Work in an IT (information technology) job

  • Work through internships or practicum experience

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Education & Certification

  • Earn coursework or college certifications (Google and Microsoft offer certifications)

  • Earn certifications specific to a cybersecurity career

  • Earn a bachelor's or master's degree in computer science or IT

Flaticon Icon Skills

  • Scripting: create a sequence of instructions

  • Intrusion detection: discover compromises to network security

  • Network security control: monitor and secure wired and wireless networks

  • Operating systems: know the ins & outs of computer software systems

  • Incident responses: handle data breaches

  • Cloud computing: understand internet computer services

  • DevOps (development operations): make security a vital part of software development

  • Threat knowledge: identify different cyber threats

  • Regulations and regulatory guidelines: follow industry compliance

Cybersecurity Careers

Lasers targeted and eliminating cyber threats The education, skills, and experience needed to enter cybersecurity are diverse but so are the duties performed in each type of related job. Here are a few jobs worth checking out!

Flaticon Icon Information Security Analyst

Average Salary: $107,343

Certifications: CompTIA Security+, GIAC Certified Intrusion Analyst (GCIA) or GIAC Certified Incident Handler (GCIH)


  • Monitor & investigate security breaches

  • Document & report security breaches

  • Research current IT trends

  • Help with security products and procedures

  • Develop security strategies that help organizations

Flaticon Icon Computer Forensic Examiner

Average Salary: $90,000

Certifications: GIAC Certified Forensic Analyst, EnCase Certified Examiner (EnCE), AccessData Certified Examiner (ACE)


  • Collect & preserve digital evidence found on computers, mobile phones, and other digital devices

  • Maintain chain of custody showing who's accessed the evidence

  • Analyze digital evidence for malicious intent

  • Assist law enforcement with investigations

  • Testify in court proceedings

Flaticon Icon IT Auditor

Average Salary: $102,242

Certifications: Certified Internal Auditor (CIA), Certified Information Systems Auditor (CISA)


  • Plan & perform audits of the organization's structure to ensure compliance with acceptable security protocols

  • Document & present findings

  • Guide security measures

  • Design plans that propose solutions to prevent future issues

  • Identify more efficient opportunities that improve internal processes and performances

Flaticon Icon Cryptography Engineer

Average Salary: $128,284

Certifications: EC-Council Certified Encryption Specialist (ECES)


  • Develop cryptographic algorithms

  • Analyze existing algorithms for vulnerabilities

  • Implement encryption solutions

  • Test encryption techniques

Flaticon Icon Penetration Tester

Average Salary: $114,856

Certifications: Certified Ethical Hacker (CEH), CompTIA PenTest+, GIAC Certified Penetration Tester (GPEN)


  • Simulate cyberattacks on computer systems and networks to identify vulnerable areas

  • Report simulation cyberattack test results

  • Develop automated scripts for the process

  • Research and experiment with different types of attacks

  • Provide tech support


Jodie works in cybersecurity. She recently uncovered a cyber threat and is working to collect as much information as possible and preserve this as evidence. What career is Jodie working in?

Take Action

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The world of cybersecurity is quickly are cyber threats and security risks. This is where you come in. Before you start a career in cybersecurity, what role in the field interests you the most?

Learn more about cybersecurity:


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