There is a high demand for cybersecurity jobs, and this is not likely to change soon. Cyber-attacks are becoming more harmful and more common, and no individual or company with an online presence is immune to attacks. It’s important that you wise-up to cybersecurity, either through training or research. Let’s discuss the cybersecurity jobs outlook so you know more about what you’re getting into.
The Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts that the job growth rate in information security will be around 37% from 2012–2022, much higher than the average for any other occupation.
IT roles are already in high demand and adding the security element only makes these roles more sought after and critical.
Cybersecurity Training – The Current State
More colleges are offering degrees in cybersecurity due to so many jobs being available, but it has not yet become a staple in undergraduate coursework. Many professionals in the cybersecurity field learned the skills through in-the-field training and cybersecurity certification programs rather than through degree programs.
Diana Burley, a professor at George Washington University, explained that the National Security Agency developed the National Centers of Academic Excellence in Information program in 1998. This was done in response to the President’s National Strategy to Secure Cyberspace, and it has sparked an increase in programs.
Burley predicts that there will be an expansion of cybersecurity content across the curriculum in the coming years. This will be due to all students representing entry points into the broadly defined cybersecurity workforce.
In the field of cybersecurity, continuous professional development is critical as threat levels continuously evolve. There are many options for professionals to expand their skill set, including additional degrees through university study, certificates from technical training companies, and practical courses to develop specific skills.
Microsoft and Cisco security training certificate programs are commonly used by professionals already in the field and wanting additional training. Although further college education is an option, it is often not easy for professionals to find a program that offers what they are looking for.
Although cybersecurity is common as a job function, the term is seldom seen in a job title. When cybersecurity is mentioned in a job title, it is most often for Cybersecurity Engineers, Specialists, Analysts, or Architects.
Jobs that need cybersecurity knowledge often use many different titles. The SANS Institute Cybersecurity Professional Trends survey lists the most common titles as Security Engineer, Security Analyst, Security Architect, CISO/CSO, Security Director or Manager, Network Architect, Systems Administrator, Auditor, Forensics Investigator, and Systems Integrator or Engineer.
Cybersecurity job roles require a number of common skills, including audit and compliance, incident handling and response, intrusion detection, firewall/IDS/IPS skills, SIEM management, analytics and intelligence, application security development, access/identity management, cloud computing/virtualization, and advanced malware prevention. While these skills are the most common, many cybersecurity roles need a number of these, plus others.
The SANS survey lists the top five industries for cybersecurity professionals as:
These industries all handle sensitive information, which is commonly targeted by hackers.
Only the Start
Although there has been a large boom in these skill sets and jobs, it is likely just the beginning for the cybersecurity jobs outlook. Current professionals will be able to broaden their skill sets with more security training, and if colleges are willing to expand their offerings, more young talent will continue to fill these roles.