10 Popular Cybersecurity Certifications 2023 Updated

A 2019 IBM report shows that the average data breach costs $3.92 million. The United States experienced nearly 35 percent of those breaches—more than any other country—with 2.2 billion records exposed. If you’re just starting out in the world of cybersecurity, consider an entry-level credential, like the Google Cybersecurity Professional Certificate. You can build job-ready skills while earning a shareable certificate from an industry leader. Before you spend your money and time on a certification, it’s important to find one that will give you a competitive advantage in your career. Here are the number of US job listings across three job sites that require these cybersecurity certifications.

  • The exam covers advanced topics like enterprise security domain, risk analysis, software vulnerability, securing cloud and virtualization technologies, and cryptographic techniques.
  • Penetration Tester is an official title for what you may know as an ethical hacker or a white hat hacker.
  • White hat or ethical hacking is the process of hacking organizations lawfully to discover weaknesses in the security before malicious hackers do.
  • Without any doubt, you are going to face many obstacles along the way and you must overcome these.
  • Keep in mind that most certification exams require significant preparation, and some include experience requirements.

In contrast, a four-year degree takes the place of two years of experience. A study by McAfee and the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) examined the financial burden of attacks. The study, titled The Hidden Costs of Cybercrime, estimates that the world loses over $1 trillion annually to cybercrime. Apart from money, some other motives for cybercrimes include ethical, social, and political incentives. Aside from taking a course to obtain a certification at the end, you can also choose to sharpen your skills by yourself. There are hundreds of free and paid course options online that might not lead to a desirable certification, but that will provide you with more theoretical and practical knowledge.

How long does it take to get certified in cybersecurity?‎

Hackers are constantly revising the way they operate, and to catch them out you need to think outside the box and adapt to this evolving landscape. Instead of following the rule book, in many instances, you’ll be required to write it. There’s no substitute for knowledge, especially in a crisis, and in the event of a cyberattack you need to be an expert.

Demand for cybersecurity experts is high, and the time it takes to become a cybersecurity engineer may vary. Expect to spend several years completing an education and gaining experience in the field before landing a cybersecurity engineering job. For intermediate cybersecurity professionals, ISACA’s Certified Information Systems Auditor® and Certified Information Systems Manager® are good options. Moreover, Global Information Assurance Certification, an entity that administers information security certifications, offers credentials that measure specific knowledge and skill areas. You can gain experience through entry-level jobs or college internships in either computer science or information technology.


You may advance to become a security architect, responsible for your organization’s entire security infrastructure. The Microsoft Cybersecurity Analyst Professional Certificate is designed to introduce the skills and knowledge you’ll need for an entry-level role as a cybersecurity analyst. Finally, holding the position of security specialist might require helping co-workers adopt new technologies and security software as it develops. But most people are reluctant to change, especially if it requires learning a new operating procedure or work-flow.

They then create security protocols and firewalls that protect an organization’s data against unauthorized access. Cybersecurity specialists also need to learn about the workings of network infrastructure to understand how it can be used or misused. This involves learning about hacker skills and the breaching of security systems. Their knowledge must allow them to take defensive or preventive measures in the event of an assault. Although certification is not needed for all entry-level cybersecurity roles, having one can boost your resume and demonstrate competencies to potential employers.

How to Become a Cyber Security Specialist

Other job titles that you might see in your search include IT Security Specialist, Network Security Specialist and Internet Security Analyst. Career opportunities for current and aspiring cybersecurity specialists have never been more plentiful or lucrative. You are probably already well aware that cybercrime is continually on the rise. In fact, cybercrime is forecasted to amount to $10.5 trillion by 2025 — which is just a few short years away. Combine this upward growth in the industry with the zero percent unemployment rate, and the result is a white-hot job market that features six-figure salaries. Candidates may spend 3-5 years gaining technology experience, often in non-security IT roles.

In contrast, soft skills like leadership ability can help professionals grow in the field. Certification and education are essential in cybersecurity specialist positions. However, employers typically prefer those with relevant work experience in the IT or computer science fields. Cybersecurity specialists with this certification think like hackers and take proactive measures to protect systems. The requirement for the CEH exam is two years of work experience in information security or completing the EC-Council’s official training.

How to become a Cyber Security specialist

Growing your network can also mean joining a professional network on Meetup or Facebook to connect with cybersecurity professionals in your area. As you work on gaining some of the skills, you’ll most likely become familiar with some cybersecurity tools, software, and hardware systems along the way. It’s a good idea to become familiar with how to use at least one how to become a security specialist cloud program like Azure, which should translate to understanding the basics of how AWS and Google Cloud work. Companies will likely want expertise in whichever tools and software they use, so it’s better to be prepared for any scenario. Search “cyber security specialist $100,000” on LinkedIn and you find a cornucopia of high-paying jobs from across the country.