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Cybersecurity Workforce:

Demand, Opportunities, and Futures

Cybersecurity workforce opportunities are increasing.  Professionals trained to find weaknesses in databases, networks, hardware, and any other software or systems are in demand, and that demand is growing.

Mile2 Cyber Security Certification

Why Career Opportunities in Cybersecurity are Growing

Throughout 2020 and 2021, the entire world was forced to enter the cyber universe. The coronavirus forced business to operate solely online. Before this sudden change, the world was just adjusting to the idea of online business. But now, after the covid-19 pandemic, this simple idea has become a reality. Businesses, education and communication is all being conducted online. People now use the internet to attend their business meetings through platforms like Zoom and Google Meet. Through the internet, people can work from home, and schools can operate online by teaching students through Zoom meetings and personal phone calls. Most of our communication is also now conducted online. Social Media platforms such as Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, and Tik Tok allow us to tell people about our lives through photos and videos. In addition, we use the internet for research, news, shopping, and job searching. As we continue to approach this future, we are all becoming a part of this digital universe.

As we continue to approach this future, we are all becoming a part of this digital universe

New Opportunites...for Bad Actors

Unfortunately, the digital world is also home to hackers, cyber-attacks, viruses, and much more. With the rise in online operations came the rise in cybercrime. Cybercrime itself increased by 273% in 2020 according to CNBC news and this number is predicted to rise in 2021. Current estimates put the cost of cybercrime at over 1 trillion in next couple of years. The situation is projected to get much worse before it gets better. Experts are calling this, “the calm before the storm”. Fortunately, there are several measures that can be taken to prevent, mitigate, and destroy cyber-attacks. This is where cybersecurity comes into play.

New Opportunities in the Cybersecurity Workforce

Cybersecurity professionals are trained to find weaknesses in databases, networks, hardware, and any other software or systems. It is their job to find these vulnerabilities and fix potential issues to prevent cyber-attacks from occurring. They can also help mitigate the effects of attacks if one should happen to occur. They are sometimes referred to as security engineers. Throughout 2020 and 2021, the need for cybersecurity professionals has grown extensively. In 2021, according to the New York Times, there are now 3.5 million unfulfilled cybersecurity jobs. More than ever, companies need to develop a strong cybersecurity team to protect their systems and networks. There are several positions available in cyber security, some of which include:

More than ever, companies need to develop a strong cybersecurity team to protect their systems and networks. 

Cybersecurity Job Roles

Cybersecurity Analyst

A cybersecurity analyst protects company software, hardware, and networks from cyber-attacks. Their primary role is to understand the companies IT infrastructure in detail and always monitor it.

 

Cybersecurity Manager

Cybersecurity managers monitor all the channels through which information flows in and out of an organization’s network. They are responsible for all operations occurring within the company’s network and infrastructure.

 

Software Engineer

Software engineers develop systems and software for businesses. They are also responsible for making sure the systems and software are built without shortcuts in security. They build secure, nearly impenetrable systems.

 

Vulnerability Assessor

Vulnerability Assessors are responsible for analyzing a system, network, or software, and checking for any vulnerabilities in the codes. If vulnerabilities are discovered, they can “fix” them in order to prevent cyber-attacks from occurring.

 

Network Engineer

Network engineers are often known as network architects. They plan, construct, and manage networks to ensure they are free of vulnerabilities and operating correctly. They are responsible for the foundation of an organization’s IT system.

Profitable Careers in the Cybersecurity Workforce

There are more cybersecurity careers in addition to these. The most common cybersecurity services are network monitoring, security analysis, and security administration. The most coveted skills are penetration testing, secure application development, incident response, customer service, and communication. However, a lot of these skills are hard to find in an employee. According to NIST, on average, 30% of professionals surveyed qualified for one of these positions. In addition, 26% of respondents say that it takes 6 or more months to fill a cybersecurity position. As the demand for cybersecurity is increasing, so are the salaries. Certain cybersecurity positions have a yearly salary of $420,000 with the overall average being $240,000. In fact, the demand for cybersecurity has become high enough that the government has had to take actions.

The Federal Cybersecurity Workforce Expansion Act

According to an article by The Hill, senators have proposed a bill to help tackle the cybersecurity workforce shortage. While it is best for an organization to have a strong cybersecurity team, it takes a while for a cybersecurity position to be filled. In addition, most of the attacks that cost organizations a large amount of money are ransomware attacks, viruses, and other malicious software. Most of these attacks can be avoided if employees are properly trained to know how to identify attacks and how to get rid of them. The Federal Cybersecurity Workforce Expansion Act would help establish a cybersecurity training program that would train employees to identify signs of potential cyber-attacks. This bill was introduced after months of escalating cyber-attacks.

 

The government is also aware of the lack of cybersecurity professionals on a national level. Sens. Maggie Hassan said “Our national cybersecurity infrastructure is woefully lacking. In order to bolster our cyber defenses and protect out critical infrastructure, we need to increase the number of cybersecurity professionals in the federal government.” The new bill will help in pushing back against cyberattacks.

World Wide Demand

The demand for cybersecurity professionals is the biggest challenge our world faces when is comes to cyber-security attacks.  According to the (ISC)² 2019 Cybersecurity Workforce Study, the global cybersecurity workforce needs to grow by 145 percent to meet the demand for skilled cybersecurity talent. In the United States, it needs to grow by 62 percent. “It’s a big task,” the report said. https://www.afcea.org/content/disa-tackles-cybersecurity-workforce-shortage-head

Roadmap to Success

The key to any successful journey is a good map.  Mile2 Cybersecurity Certifications began building cybersecurity courses and exams based on real-world job roles long before it became popular.  By examining the Tasks performed by cybersecurity professionals in specific roles to determine the knowledge, skills, and abilities needed to perform those tasks, Mile2 was able to design a course roadmap that can guide a person toward the mastery of skills needed to execute a specific job role.  Mile2’s Cybersecurity Certifications Roadmap will help guide you by mapping their available certifications to a Role-Based Career path of your choosing.

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