Cybersecurity involves tools, services, systems, and best practices designed to help with the detection, prevention, and mitigation of crime that involves the internet. There are common types of cyberattacks that Cybersecurity aims to address, including phishing, malware, ransomware, and cyberterrorism. The purpose of cyberattacks varies, but some common motivations are to steal private information or demand money.
These benefits can be enjoyed by learners earning titles such as Chief Information Security Officer, Forensic Computer Analyst, Information Security Analyst, Penetration Tester, Security Architect, IT Security Engineer, Security Systems Administrator, and others that are related.
Cybersecurity courses offered through Coursera help learners understand modern information- and system- protection technology and methods; how to connect cybersecurity concepts to real business experiences; types of cyberattacks; operating system and database vulnerabilities; topics such as cryptography and digital forensics; and more.
Lessons on Cybersecurity are taught by professors specializing in Computer Science, Information Security, and related disciplines, and are administered via video lectures, interviews with experts, readings, quizzes, and more.
The length of time you’ll need to prepare for a certification exam will depend on what you already know and what you’ll need to learn. Preparing could take anywhere from a week to several months (assuming you meet the work prerequisites). Read our article about popular cybersecurity certifications to learn more.
Excellent computer and internet skills are a must when you want to learn about cybersecurity. Any sort of job experience, internships, or high school or college classes involving information technology, like computer programming, digital marketing, software development, and computer forensic analysis, can be helpful too. You can also benefit from past experience or education on topics like computer hardware, computer science, vulnerability assessment, system threats, information security, and statistics. A background in criminal justice or any kind of investigative work may even help when you study cybersecurity, as can experience in telecommunications, national security, fraud, financial security, and law enforcement. Knowledge of operating systems, cloud networks, wireless networks, and mobile devices may also be necessary.
People who are curious, inquisitive, and like detective work are best suited for roles in cybersecurity. You should also be a lifelong learner. New security threats are popping up every day, and you'll need to continue your education regularly to stay on top of them and find out how to combat them. People who work in cybersecurity need to be problem solvers; sometimes problems in this field require creative solutions. Because you'll be monitoring systems for threat, you'll need the ability to pay close attention to minor details. While cybersecurity can entail plenty of time spent working alone, you'll also need to be a good communicator. Whether you work for a company, a law enforcement agency, or a government agency, you'll need to interact with other departments and keep them up to date on what's happening.
Anyone who wants a career that allows them to put their detective skills to good use could benefit from learning cybersecurity. Learning about the topic can also help open you up to other careers in information technology. If you already work in the cybersecurity field, ongoing learning is a must to keep your knowledge and skills up to date, so the more you study, the better you'll be at your job. If you own a business or run your own website, learning cybersecurity may also be beneficial if you want to understand how to keep your information safe.
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