How to Start Cybersecurity Training

03/16/2021

Cybersecurity is a field that focuses on preventing virtual and digital threats from occurring at a given company. For example, it is the job of a cybersecurity specialist to prevent computers from being hacked. It is also the responsibility of a cybersecurity analyst to prevent severe cyber attacks from taking place. 

While businesses and institutions must invest in advanced firewall and malware measures, cybersecurity analysts are also responsible for educating laypeople on spotting cybersecurity threats and avoiding them. The best way to deal with cybersecurity threats is to prevent them from happening. Therefore, the prevention of a cyber attack is one of the cornerstones of a cybersecurity analyst job.

What is Cybersecurity?

Cybersecurity involves preventing cyber attacks from taking place, plain and simple. Some of these types of cybersecurity include:

  • Application Security: Many people do not realize that criminals can access a company’s network using mobile applications. When discussing application security, the goal is to update, test, and patch applications regularly to ensure they are not vulnerable to exploitation. It’s also important that the cyber expert communicate any changes to in-house apps so employees can download and update with the latest software. 
  • Information Security: Information technology security focuses on reducing individuals’ ability to gain access to sensitive information. The triad of information security is called ICA or integrity, confidentiality and availability. Often, cyber specialists will work with employees to maximize password protection, for instance, to prevent outsiders from hacking accounts.
  • Operational Security: As data travels from person to person, it could be lost or stolen. Operational security aims to track data as it moves from place to place, reducing the chances that it might get hacked along the way.
  • Network Security: In network security, companies will focus on techniques and processes required to prevent unauthorized individuals from accessing the network, or a complete group of computers and tech devices. This is one of the most critical issues when it comes to control and identity management. The goal of this comprehensive security program is to prevent cyber attacks from taking place.
fingerprint security

Types of Cybersecurity Threats

There are several significant types of cybersecurity threats the people might encounter. Some of the most common examples include:

  • Phishing: In a phishing attack, a criminal tricks an employee into surrendering personal information, which the criminal can then use to log into the network and steal information. The phishing attempt is most often delivered via email asking the user to click a link to login to their account. The link is connected to the hacker who then records the login information for the real site.
  • Spear Phishing: Also called social engineering, this focuses on a single employee by learning everything about them and the company, tricking them into surrendering information. 
  • Man in the Middle Attack: Data is encrypted when it leaves a computer and when it arrives at its destination; however, it might not be encrypted in the middle, which is where a man in the middle could steal it.
  • Trojans: This is a type of virus usually disguised as legitimate software, which hackers can upload to a network and steal information.
  • Denial or Distributed Denial of Service Attack (DDoS): This attack aims to overwhelm a network or system with so many requests that it cannot possibly respond to any of them. This shuts down a system.
  • Ransomware: This is a severe type of attack where a criminal locks up a network, encrypting all of its data, demanding a ransom to release the system. This has the potential to take down entire companies in the blink of an eye.
  • Malware: This is a broad term that is used to describe anything that might cause harm to the company’s data, servers, or networks.
  • Social Engineering: Also called spear-phishing, this is the process of learning everything about an employee or company, tricking him or her into surrendering information.
  • Hacking: Hacking is the process of gaining access to networks either through a brute force attack or through a back door, unlocking the network and stealing information.
  • Cross-Site Scripting: Usually shortened to XSS, hackers exploit vulnerabilities in scripts in applications, injecting scripts into webpages that are then leveraged to access certain types of data.
  • DNS Spoofing: In this attack, the DNA cache is poisoned via a malicious string via a DNS resolver, allowing attackers to access the network.
  • Secure Sockets Layer Attack: This type of attack is similar to a DDoS attack. tons of worthless information is directed at the SSL server which causes connection issues for real users trying to reach a website. In other cases, hackers may try to abuse the actual SSL protocol in other ways. 
online security

Types of Cyber Attacks

During the cybersecurity training process, individuals are also going to learn about some of the different types of cyber-attacks that might take place. A few of the most common examples include:

  • Drive-By Attack: In a drive-by attack, a hacker looks for insecure websites and plants malicious scripts on one of the pages, installing malware directly onto the computer of someone who visits the site.
  • Password Attack: A password attack is designed to steal someone's password or use a Brute Force attack to access a network.
  • SQL Injection Attack: This type of attack uses an SQL query from the database, inserting SQL commands in the data plane to gain admin privileges, possibly shutting down the database in the process. This is used to bypass passwords and login screens.
  • Eavesdropping Attack: An eavesdropping attack is conducted to intercept data from place to place, possibly where it is unencrypted in transit.
  • Birthday Attack: This attack aims to replace a legitimate message processed using a hash function with a fake one, abusing communication privileges between two parties.

The Importance of Cybersecurity Training for Employees

One of the most important tasks of cybersecurity is actually the responsibility of the employees. There are several reasons why cybersecurity training for employees is necessary. These include:

  • Cybersecurity professionals are not going to be able to watch everything. It is essential to get employees involved to make sure they can spot cyberattacks as well.
  • In many situations, cybersecurity attacks are going to take advantage of uneducated employees. It is important for cybersecurity professionals to prevent this from happening by training employees on things like using strong passwords and avoiding phishing attempts.
  • When employees are trained on the most significant cybersecurity threats, they are more likely to listen to cybersecurity professionals and take measures to prevent them.

For this reason, everyone needs to understand cybersecurity best practices.

Cybersecurity Best Practices

When it comes to cybersecurity, there are a few cybersecurity best practices employees should keep in mind. These include:

  • When possible, two-factor authentication should be employed to increase security
  • Proper password hygiene has to be practiced regularly
  • Everyone has to make sure they stay up-to-date on the latest threats in the field of cybersecurity
  • Never share personal information over email
  • Practice a policy of minimum required access

Following these best practices can go a long way toward keeping everyone safe.

Training for a Career in Cybersecurity

When it comes to training for a career in cybersecurity, there are multiple paths available. There are lots of jobs in the world of cybersecurity. Therefore, there is no one way to enter this field. With this in mind, it is a good idea to start by looking at some of the available cybersecurity courses. By getting a head start on the training process, individuals will place themselves in a position to be competitive for some of the top educational opportunities in the field of cybersecurity. Now, it is time to learn more about some of the options regarding cybersecurity training.

Options for Cybersecurity Training

There are multiple ways that someone might train for a career in cybersecurity. Some of the training options include:

  • Online: There are plenty of cybersecurity training courses that are offered almost exclusively online. This allows individuals to learn in a remote process, also being exposed to the same quality of education. Given that individuals looking to become cybersecurity professionals are going to spend a significant portion of their time online, it is only natural that there are cybersecurity training online programs offered that cover cybersecurity awareness.
  • Offline: At the same time, there are also traditional training options for those who are looking for a career in business cybersecurity. These are training programs that will take place at conventional educational institutions; however, it is important to note that students will still need a computer to complete this comprehensive cybersecurity training curriculum.
  • Self-Paced: There are opportunities for training in a self-paced format. The biggest advantage of self-paced training is that individuals can progress through the training programs as quickly as they would like. This allows individuals to tailor their training to meet their personal schedules while still completing a strong comprehensive cybersecurity training curriculum program.
  • Real-Time: At the same time, some individuals might not have the discipline to complete training programs independently. This is where real-time training classes can be helpful. Those looking to learn in a traditional format may be interested in learning more about this option.
  • Hybrid: There are also Hybrid models available where the educational program might be provided using a combination of the methods above where people will learn about advanced persistent threats, general data protection regulation, and other high-value skills.
  • Bootcamp: Finally, there are also bootcamp methods available. A boot camp training program is usually designed to give people a head start on the training they need to become a cybersecurity professional. These are typically fast-paced courses that focus exclusively on cybersecurity. This is commonly called an immersion program.
cyber security experts

Cybersecurity Courses

For those looking to make a career in cybersecurity, they will need to pass several types of courses. These include:

  • Basic Computer Science
  • Discrete Mathematics
  • The Foundations of Cybersecurity
  • Basic Programming and Risk Management
  • Computer and Network Security
  • Security for Operating Systems
  • Database and Distributed Systems Security
  • Information Assurance, Malware Detection, and Protection

These, or similar, courses will be necessary for developing a lasting career in cybersecurity.

Cybersecurity Certificates

There are several different types of cybersecurity certificates that people might earn. Some cybersecurity training certification examples include:

  • Certified Ethical Hacker: A certified ethical hacker is someone who has undergone specific training to perform test hacking situations, identifying holes in security systems and patching them in the process.
  • CompTIA Security+: A base-level certification in the IT field that requires two years to complete. This program focuses on network attacks, strategies, and defenses.
  • CompTIA Network+: This certification demonstrates that an IT professional has the base knowledge and skills required to work in IT infrastructure, covering both wired and wireless networks.
  • Certified Information System Security Professional: A cybersecurity certification, usually seen as the foundation of a cybersecurity career. This degree covers access control, telecommunications, developing a cybersecurity framework, and networking.
  • Certified Information Security Manager: The CISM program is one of the top cybersecurity disciplines out there. Five years of experience are required to apply. It covers information security program development, cybersecurity management, and compliance.
  • Certified Information Systems Auditor: Focuses on information auditing. The certification demonstrates a tremendous amount of rigorous audit experience, particularly regarding the protection of information assets using security programs and continuous monitoring.
  • Licensed Penetration Tester: A licensed penetration tester has undergone training to run cyberattacks simulations. Then, organizations can find vulnerabilities and patch them before they are exploited.
  • NIST Cybersecurity Framework: This National Institute of Standards of Technology (NIST) certification serves as a validation that cybersecurity professionals have the baseline skills to design, construct, test, and manage cybersecurity programs.
  • Certified Cloud Security Professional: Focuses on cybersecurity in the cloud, covering topics such as cloud architecture, cloud data security, cloud operations, teleworking risks, and legal compliance.
  • Computer Hacking Forensic Investigator: This certification focuses on incident response, cyber forensics, recovering deleted information, and reporting computer evidence.
  • Cisco Certified Network Associate Security: The CCNA certification shows that professionals know how to recognize threats and vulnerabilities in a Cisco system, mitigate security threats, and develop an adequate security infrastructure.

Cybersecurity hands-on training is essential and enrolling in cybersecurity training near me is critical, for some people. With the right cybersecurity training courses, people can learn cybersecurity from scratch to enter the cybersecurity workforce. The good news is that there are ways to lower the cybersecurity training cost, particularly in cybersecurity training for veterans.

Cybersecurity Degrees

For those who are learning cybersecurity from scratch, there are several degree options available. In general, most people are going to have a four-year degree in either cybersecurity or information technology. Some people start with a two-year degree at a local community college before finishing their education at a four-year institution. On the other hand, some people like to go straight into a four-year program. There are also situations where people earn a certificate, such as the one above, before completing a four-year degree.

cyber security team

A Variety of Cybersecurity Degrees

There are lots of cybersecurity degree options that people might earn. Some of the most common examples include:

  • Computer Science: A general degree that focuses on programming, coding, and various other fundamentals when it comes to computers and how they operate.
  • Information Technology: A degree in information technology covers various technological fields, including software development, programming, and cybersecurity.
  • Cybersecurity: A path that specializes almost exclusively in cybersecurity. This educational program focuses on some of the biggest cybersecurity threats and prevention measures available today and in the future.
  • Computer Information Systems: A degree that focuses on distributed systems, such as networks that are spread out over a vast geographic distance, focusing on cybersecurity.

It is possible to enter cybersecurity using any one of these degree options.

How Long is Cybersecurity Training and Education?

The exact length of time that people will spend training for a cybersecurity degree will vary from person to person; however, the typical path is that individuals looking for a career in cybersecurity will start by finishing high school. Then, they will go on to a four-year school to complete a degree in one of the areas mentioned above.

In some cases, individuals will go to a two-year school first and complete an associate's degree. Usually, to enter cybersecurity, these professionals have to finish a four-year degree to be competitive for a job in the field.

In some cases, individuals might be able to get into cybersecurity with only a two-year degree. Usually, these professionals have years of experience in the trenches of IT before they migrate to cybersecurity. Having an extra cybersecurity certification can help.

cyber security professional

Most-Popular Cybersecurity Jobs

When looking at jobs for cybersecurity, there are lots of options. Some of the most prevalent cybersecurity jobs include:

  • Security Architect: A security architect’s job is to oversee a company’s computer system’s maintenance. Like an ethical hacker, a security architect will be responsible for thinking about what malicious hackers might try to accomplish, anticipating their moves and stopping them in their tracks.
  • Security Analyst: The job of a security analyst is to look at trends when it comes to the security system of a business, organization, or company. The security analyst will ensure that companies stay on top of the latest trends in the field and employ the most robust defense measures possible.
  • Security Software Developer: A security software developer will be responsible for developing new software programs, tools, and applications that are going to play a critical role in the cyber-security defenses of an organization.
  • Cryptanalyst: Someone in this field is going to be responsible for encrypting and decrypting data. The goal of encrypting data is to prevent it from theft, mainly when it is in transit from place to place.
  • Security Engineer: A security engineer is responsible for safeguarding all of the organization's networks, servers, and systems. They plan and implement security measures to prevent hackers from gaining access to a network.
  • Security Administrator: A security administrator is a supervisor who manages, assists, and organizes many of the other security professionals on this list. Furthermore, a security administrator may also be responsible for procuring new hardware and software in the world of cybersecurity.
  • Cryptographer: A cryptographer is responsible for developing security systems using ciphers, algorithms, and encryption techniques to hide sensitive data, protecting it from harm.
  • Security Consultant: A security consultant acts as a third party, working with various organizations, companies, and businesses. He or she will audit the security systems of these companies and recommend changes.
  • Penetration Tester: A penetration tester is going to be responsible for running simulations of various malware attacks. The job of this professional is to probe security systems for weaknesses and recommend changes.
  • Ethical Hacker: The job of an ethical hacker is to probe systems and look for vulnerabilities, letting people know to patch them before an actual hacker tries to get in.
  • Chief Information Security Officer: A chief information security officer is an executive. This is usually an experienced cybersecurity and information technology professional who has decades of experience in the field. The job of a chief information security officer will be overseeing all of the other positions above and keeping their eyes open for new opportunities in the world of cybersecurity to strengthen the defenses of a technology department. This individual often reports directly to the CEO.

These are just a few of the many jobs with cybersecurity that are available. As demand grows for these positions, the pay is only going to increase. Therefore, cybersecurity is an incredibly lucrative and rewarding field. To get started on your path to becoming a cybersecurity professional, get in touch with our admissions advisors and ask about our Introductory Course!

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