Cybersecurity is an escalating concern of the 21st century. The higher occurrence of cyber threats pushes companies to call for the services of cybersecurity experts to secure high-profile business assets and sensitive information. Different cybersecurity jobs are in high demand nowadays to help organizations perform in the secure online world.
The role of Cybersecurity Analyst is similar to sibling roles like Information Security Analyst and Computer Systems Analyst who in general practice implement different methodologies to secure network and data by identifying and immuning threats, but a Cybersecurity Analyst’s role is linked with issues related to vulnerability identification and reverse-engineering attacks for the protection of information systems.
Cybersecurity analyst’s role is:
- To identify and evaluate vulnerabilities in the IT infrastructure.
- Reporting all sorts of intrusion attempts and false alarms.
- To propose a robust security infrastructure or strengthen the existing one.
Cybersecurity analysts assist in preventing cyberattacks by analyzing routine procedures and conducting a risk analysis of the firm’s IT infrastructure. By conducting a vulnerability management routine and enhancing the visibility of a network, they minimize potential threats and control them. These skilled individuals not only help to figure out possible intrusions, secure networks from cyberattacks like SQL injection attacks, Cross-site scripting (XSS) attack, denial-of-service attacks, and viruses but can also provide better solutions for securing systems. They provide consulting services, develop security methodologies and technologies, can advise and provide a security architecture for data protection, and study the latest technologies to ensure that they sustain the organization’s security policies and IT infrastructure.
The principal objective of the cybersecurity analyst’s role is prevention rather than post-incidental recovery. Their role is to provide instant response to cyber intelligence alerts when required in order to counter breach attempts before they even happen. In accordance with this objective, these professionals apply methods that investigate the origin of cybersecurity threats.
Having the right cybersecurity analyst in a team is a crucial need for many companies. There are two types of skills needed to make the presence of cybersecurity analysts fruitful within a security team.
Hard skills to involve not only technical efficiency and Tacit and Explicit Knowledge to implement data analytics.
Soft skills base on personality traits like workmanship and work transparency.
A true professional uses technical experience to counter threats and emergency incidents. He or she can use analytical skills to study the data collected through security information and event management (SIEM) and system monitoring tools to understand the impact of cyber incidents and build a strategy to find the solution appropriate for the protection of information systems from hackers and cyber-attacks.
On the other hand, Interpersonal skills cannot be neglected. Strong verbal and written communication skills are essential, and CSAs are expected to communicate security information effectively to all stakeholders including team members, customers and other analysts on board. They also need to be practical in terms of making effective decisions and propose or deploy solutions or improvements to prevent activities that may lead to cyberattacks.
Every organization that handles sensitive information needs the services of cybersecurity analysts as in-house employees or as part of an external consultancy team. Demand for these professionals is very high in various sectors, including education, financial, airline, and intelligence.
There exist great opportunities for cybersecurity analysts that are willing to debut in the field of cybersecurity. It’s a vast field to grow for those interested in pursuing this occupation.
It’s an excellent time to debut in this field. Cybersecurity as a separate degree is hard to find, as many Cybersecurity Analysts join the profession after obtaining general degrees in Computer Science. Cybersecurity analysts are expected to have a variety of skills, including fundamental knowledge of different IT aspects, information security, cryptography and project management. The expertise in this profession cannot be only attained by attending colleges but mainly through on-the-job training and certifications.
Cybersecurity analysts at least need a bachelor’s degree in IT, computer science, or other related fields. Different companies prefer experienced professionals who have worked as systems, network or database administrator. Some companies prefer candidates having a Master’s degree in a relevant field with on-job experience.
To set the fundamental standards for mandatory knowledge and to help in defining the duties and responsibilities of Cybersecurity Analyst, CompTIA introduced the Cybersecurity Analyst (CSA+) certification in 2017. The CSA+ certification is recognized worldwide and is ANSI/ISO/IEC 17024 recognized.
Cybersecurity Certifications like the CSA+ intended to follow CompTIA Network+, Security+ or build on equivalent experience set the standard for what a cybersecurity analyst needs to know and is a proficient way to get specialized knowledge, and the same time is vectored towards acknowledging all topics that such a professional knowledge. Cybersecurity Certifications like CompTIA’s CSA+ focuses on the application of pattern-based analytics to enhance the overall IT security, basic knowledge, and expertise essential for this profession.
The average Cyber Security Analyst’s salary is $70,000 per year. A freshly certified CSA+ Cyber Security Analyst earns an average annual salary of $75,118, while professionals with mid-career experience can earn around $124,357 per annum.
Cyber threats are some of the world’s most feared threats for many organizations and facilities. With the escalation of cybersecurity threats, the need for intrusion prevention is also increased as many of the new professionals debuted in the IT field tend to be cybersecurity analysts. The protection and integrity of data and the security of the systems are critical necessities for any facility; that is why the need for cybersecurity analysts will further increase in the next few years.
In the modern era, to become a cybersecurity analyst, traditional degrees will always be essential to form professionals, but on-job practical experience, hands-on training, and related certifications are vital for success in this field.
Due to the highly competitive employment market for skilled IT professionals, getting Cybersecurity Certifications are necessary to ensure a successful future in the field of cybersecurity. Individuals willing to enhance IT security analyst skills can get the CompTIA CSA+ certification to build a sound career in the cybersecurity field and to succeed in a career in high demand.