5 Career Tips for Women in Cyber Security
Guest post by: Carla Lopez
If you’re a woman who is curious about pursuing a career in cyber security, you might be wondering how to break into the field. Today, practically every organization needs cyber security services, and there have never been more opportunities for women in this growing field. Here is your basic roadmap to launching your career in cyber security.
In order to get a job in cyber security, you will need to earn your bachelor’s degree. You may want to choose a major like information technology, computer science, or network engineering. Depending on the university you attend, you may be able to specifically major in cyber security! You can also earn additional certifications that will qualify you for more opportunities. Morson recommends earning the Systems Security Certified Practitioner (SSCP) qualification once you’ve gained about a year of work experience.
Explore Job Titles
There are many different job titles that fall under the umbrella of “cyber security,” so it’s important to consider which specific position you want to land. You may want to look into particular job titles that are both common and well-compensated. IT Governance USA states that lots of companies are looking for application security engineers, information security analysts, and IT security specialists.
Get Your Foot in the Door
What can you do to boost your chances of getting an offer for your first cyber security job? You may want to look to female mentors for advice and referrals – they can pass along recommendations for companies with openings or even put you in touch with their current or former hiring managers. Furthermore, you can start by applying for internships and apprenticeships with employers who provide a clear path to upward advancement for entry-level team members.
After you schedule your first interview, it’s a good idea to come up with a list of questions for the hiring manager. You want to show them that you’ve done your homework, and you’re genuinely interested in the role. You can also consider which accomplishments you want to highlight in the interview. Your goal is to demonstrate to the company that you already understand how to solve the problems that their customers are facing.
Networking is the key to advancing in your field and building a sustainable, long-lasting career. As a woman working in cyber security, you may want to seek out networking organizations that are specifically geared towards women in STEM fields or computer science industries. Learning from other women who have been in your shoes can help you become a more confident cyber security professional. You can attend networking events, conferences, and workshops alongside other women who have lots to teach you!
What if you don’t feel fulfilled while working for an employer? Some women in cyber security may prefer working independently if they have faced obstacles to promotion or had negative experiences with office politics. In this case, entrepreneurship might be the right path for you.
You can easily strike out on your own and start a cyber security business – your services will definitely be in demand! It’s a good idea to form your company as an LLC before you start doing business with customers. The LLC structure will grant you tax breaks to help you save. Plus, your personal financial assets will be secure. If you’re interested in providing services as a nonprofit, you could establish a public benefits corporation.
Today, women in cyber security are making great strides. If you’re thinking about working in cyber security, you can set yourself up for a long, fruitful career. With these tips, you’ll be prepared to succeed in your first cyber security job!
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