The Roadmap to Your Future in Cybersecurity
Written by: CJ McGillivray
Transitioning into cybersecurity is one of the most compelling and practical choices you can make right now. There are rapid technological developments and cybersecurity threats all around us, which only increases the demand for qualified cybersecurity personnel. But how do you get from here to there? How do you become a cybersecurity expert and what are the steps you can take to land your dream job? The road may come with twists and turns along the way, but that is no reason not to pursue your passion. Picturing a methodic roadmap provides you with a clearer mental image of what the journey will look like. Everyone has a unique journey, but here are some actionable steps you can take to reach your goal.
Step One: Get Inspired
How do you envision your future? The first thing that you need to do is get inspired. Start your research by reading books, magazines or blogs on hot cybersecurity topics. Listen to podcasts so you can soak up the latest cybersecurity news and relevant industry updates. Cyber News senior writer and researcher Edvardas Mikalauskas has curated an excellent list of the best cybersecurity podcasts to help you stay relevant and informed. Some of Mikalauskas' top recommendations include Unsupervised Learning, Smashing Security and The CyberWire Daily Podcast.
Step Two: Get Support
Talk to your current employer about opportunities for advancement or professional development. If you currently work in administration, have a conversation with your supervisor about the possibility of transitioning into a cybersecurity role within your company. Your conversation could focus on these three guiding questions:
- Does your company have any current job openings that they are struggling to fill?
- Are there any education funding opportunities through your company?
- Would your employer be willing to invest in your career growth so you help solve their problem of a cybersecurity talent shortage?
Depending on how your conversations go, you may need to look outside your current workplace for funding options so that you can invest in cybersecurity courses and certification training. Depending on where you live, there may be external funding options available to help finance your education.
Step Three: Get Educated
Certification training is important in any sector, but it can really make or break your career in cybersecurity. Having the proper education and certification proves to potential employers that you are serious and qualified for the job. Your resume will pop and you will know exactly what to say in your job interview. If you are fairly new to cybersecurity or information technology, then CompTIA A+ certification training course is the place to start. You will quickly develop foundational knowledge of the core technologies at play.
Throughout your career, continuing education will help you stay ahead of the curve. Consider taking additional courses such as the CySA+ certification training course, which equips you to work as a vulnerability or threat intelligence analyst, among other roles. If you have your heart set on becoming a systems or security administrator, then the Security+ certification training course is the way to go. You could also look into the CompTIA Network+ certification training course which prepares you for intermediate networking and infrastructure roles within any organization.
Step Four: Get Paid
The last step on your career roadmap is pretty simple. Aim high and pursue cybersecurity jobs with upstanding companies. Look for roles that align with your personal values, expertise and interest. Know your worth and continue to pursue learning opportunities wherever you can.
Read our other blog: Get Hired By Your Dream Employer with CompTIA Network+ Certification