Cybersecurity Consultant Career Path [ Job & Future ]
Last updated on 16th Jul 2020, Blog, General
Are you ready to start earning a living as a Cyber Security Consultant? The Field Engineer platform can help turn that dream into a reality by providing the necessary support to attract the high-paying clients you crave with greater results than ever before.
What is The Cyber Security Consultant Job Description?
In a nutshell, working as a Cyber Security Consultant means that you will be responsible for keeping a client’s data suitably protected and free from the risk of cyber attacks and related problems. In reality, though, the role is far more complex and integral to modern business than that simple definition would suggest.
Whether you work as a full-time IT Security Consultant or focus on cyber security consultant freelance jobs, you will be involved in the various organizational evaluating risks, issues, and provides solutions for internet security problems. Sometimes you may perform to control the risk including physical security consultant or as an IT consultant who works with computer systems to avoid the cyber threat or from malware.
As the role of technology has grown, the risks to security have shot up too. This is why companies are happy to pay handsomely for a Cyber Security Consultant to protect their business against those dangers. If you are looking for freelance Cyber Security Consultant jobs, Field Engineer can help you find and win the position.
What are The Responsibilities of A Cyber Security Consultant?
The role of a Cyber Security Consultant is focused on protection, but this can cover many different facets. Ultimately, working this role (either full-time or on a freelance basis) involves executing strategic services related to the client’s cyber security.
Specific assignments may include:
- To find the most efficient way to protect the system, networks, software, data and information systems against any potential attacks.
- To implement vulnerability testing, threat analyses, and security checks.
- To perform the research on cyber security criteria, security systems, and validation procedures.
- To successfully manage meetings with IT departments to fix specific internet safety problems.
- To calculate accurate cost estimations and categorize integration issues for IT project teams.
- To plan and design healthy security architectures for any IT project.
- To investigate and provide security solutions using business standard analysis criteria.
- To deliver technical reports and official papers relating to test findings.
- To give professional supervision and guidance to security teams.
- To update and upgrade security systems as required.
You will be expected to provide clients with the ongoing cyber security features to protect their systems, employees, and customers. Therefore, a comprehensive understanding of the latest threats, procedures, and facilities is essential. Meanwhile, you’ll need to know how to find the clients – that’s where the FE platform can help.
WHAT DO SECURITY CONSULTANTS DO?
Security consults deal with various threats to physical and computer security. Security threats come in many forms such as computer hackers, terrorists, and attacks on physical assets. There are specializations for security consultants of building security, natural and man-made disaster prevention, or with computer security issues.
Some of the roles security consultants may do for companies or private individuals are installing physical protections of video surveillance and alarm systems. Physical security risks are issues for many companies and security consultants may determine physical security risks such as threats of violence in the workplace, the stability of a building during tornadoes, earthquakes, fires, or other natural disasters, and development of evacuation plans for personnel during emergencies. Security consultants also may advise on building maintenance issues.
They may counsel businesses about hiring competent security personnel and help perform background checks on potential employee hires. Training new employee hires or existing employees on security issues specific to the company or individual can be a critical role for security consultants. Non-physical roles for security consultants can be as computer security consultants who assess IT systems, databases, and computer infrastructures for weaknesses hackers can exploit with unauthorized access, data loss, or data modification. On state and federal levels, security consultants might advise leaders about what actions to take in times of war, national crisis, or how to counter terrorism.
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According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, most security consultants require at least a bachelor’s degree to enter the field. As in any profession, employment opportunities improve with educational achievement. Your major in college depends on what type of security consulting you want to pursue. A degree in criminal justice is useful or you might choose to pursue an IT degree if you intend to be a computer security consultant.
Other college courses you may want to take include intelligence management, public safety, criminology, and homeland security. Accounting and finance are useful courses if you have your own security business. Foreign language proficiency is useful for those who plan to work at the federal level as security consultants.
Certification, some specialized, is also helpful for security consultants. For example, a physical or IT security consultant could benefit from becoming a Certified Security Consultant (CSC) or as a Certified Protection Professional. Consultants working in IT could benefit from earning a Certified Information Systems Security Professional certification. In addition, there are many other certificates such as network security certification that computer security consultant may choose to pursue to enhance educational and professional skills. Certification programs exist in loss prevention, cyber-crime investigation, logistics, safety, and computer security.
On the job training under the mentorship of senior security consultants can be an important part of a security consultant’s education, training, and career.
Salaries for security consultants vary depending on worker education, training, certification, and experience. The median salary for a systems/application security analyst, according to salary.com, is $73,981. For information services consultants, the median salary is $104,985.
ANNUAL MEDIAN SALARY OF
Systems/Application Security Analyst
ANNUAL MEDIAN SALARY OF
Information Services Consultant
Earning further certifications and belonging to professional organizations can help raise your earning potential through training, networking, and other professional opportunities. Some professional organizations that help their members keep current with security consultant best practices are the International Association of Professional Security Consultants and the ASIS International.
What’s next: Exploit countless career options for cyber security consultants
As cyber-attacks have grown, so has the demand for cyber security consultants among government agencies, banks, medical institutions, insurance companies, among others.
But reports from researchers, security bodies and governments maintain that the skills gap in cybersecurity is still glaring. An article from the US Bureau of labor statistics estimates a projected growth of 28% for information security analyst jobs from 2016 to 2026. The article also notes that the demand for managed security service providers will rise, as companies still lack the capacity to handle cyber threats.
Trends show there is and always has been a shortage of cybersecurity talent. For example:
- In 2014, the Cisco Annual Security Report stated that by 2014, there would be a shortage of 1 million cyber security professionals globally.
- In 2015, Symantec CEO, Michael Brown, said that by 2019, though the demand for cybersecurity professionals will have risen to 6 million jobs, there will still be a talent shortage of 1.5 million.
- In 2016 ISACA conducted a skills gap analysis that estimated a shortage of 2 million cybersecurity professionals by the year 2019.
- Current job forecasts still show that the industry is unable to cope with the increasing demand for cybersecurity jobs. Cybersecurity Ventures predicts that by 2021, 3.5 million cyber security jobs will be unfilled.
Robert Herjavec, CEO of Herjavec Group, points out that the shortage of security talent hampers efforts to deal with the ever-increasing incidents of cybercrime. This makes it highly likely that black hat hackers will continue to outpace us. Herjavec recommends that everyone who is employed in IT needs to take an active part in defending their company’s infrastructure and network.