Cybersecurity is how we protect computers, hardware and software. Whether this be technology, processes or measures that we take to protect ourselves from cybercrimes.
As more things become reliant on technology with our homes and businesses being opened up to internet controlled devices (known as the Internet of Things), and the increase in data being produced by these new technologies, cybersecurity is more important than ever to protect ourselves against threats.
Cybersecurity has become so important over recent years that the Government has written a strategy on how to deal with cybercrimes. We also have a UK National Cyber Security Centre.
Are there jobs in it now?
Yes, and the need for skilled professionals in cybersecurity is growing at a massive pace. The Government’s strategy and investment to transform cybersecurity in the UK indicates that this is set to expand.
Steve Morgan, Editor-In-Chief of Cybersecurity Ventures has written a report on cybersecurity jobs which suggests that cybercrime will triple the number of cybersecurity job openings over the next five years.
The report suggests that people who are already working in the IT industry have some element of cybersecurity as part of their job as the work that they produce must be created with vulnerabilities in mind so that the infrastructure behind the product is protected from cybercriminals.
IEEE Computer Society - Top 5 Security Threats
ITPro- The A to Z of security threats
Wikipedia - Computer security
What roles are available?
What qualifications do I need? What are the routes into cybersecurity?
Most cybersecurity roles require knowledge or experience in a STEM related background and will require strong IT skills. However, it is sometimes possible to get a job in cybersecurity without a technical or computer science degree.
There are masters courses in cybersecurity, visit FindAMasters.com
If you are going into a cybersecurity role after university, it is most common to join a graduate programme that is specifically designed around building the skills that you need over the course of a couple of years. There are schemes that do not ask for a specific degree, mainly in larger companies with a growing cybersecurity department. You may even join on a general graduate scheme but have the opportunity to join a rotation in their IT or security department.
Direct entry roles
It is also possible to get into this area of work through a non-graduate scheme pathway – you can see some examples of the different pathways available on the CyberSeek website.
For example, if you are looking at becoming a security software developer, you may find yourself starting your career as a software developer while gaining skills and knowledge in virus and spyware protection and then applying these skills into a cybersecurity related role.
What skills do I need to get into this area of work?
The key skills required to work in cybersecurity are:
- a keen interest in IT and developments in the sector
- a strong IT skills and knowledge including hardware, software and networks
- attention to detail, analytical abilities and the ability to recognise trends in data
- creativity and patience
- logic and objectivity
- an inquisitive nature
- a forensic approach to challenges
- a proactive approach with the confidence to make decisions
- a methodical and well-organised approach to work
- the ability to work under pressure and meet deadlines
- communication skills and the ability to interact effectively with a range of people
- an understanding of confidentiality issues, and the law relating to them
- a deep understanding of how hackers work and ability to keep up with the fast pace of change in the criminal cyber-underworld
- ability to seek out vulnerabilities in IT infrastructures
Sources: Prospects and TargetJobs
Where can I find a job or internship in cybersecurity?
Enhance your career prospects at Nottingham
To enhance your prospects of a career in cybersecurity, consider attending networking events. There are several tech meetups that happen in the Nottingham area that you could get involved in. These are a good place to speak to like-minded people and pick up some hints and tips along the way.
Hackathons are also a great way to get experience in learning new tech skills and networking with like-minded individuals. HackSoc organising HackNotts Hackathon.