Cyber security is a wide-ranging industry developing at a rapid pace in response to the growing sophistication of cyber criminals and hackers. As a cyber security specialist you are responsible for protecting an organisations IT system from attack and online threats, in order to protect against data breaches and loss of confidential information. Any computer or mobile device connected to the internet is vulnerable to cyber-attacks. The role involves regularly monitoring and scanning data centres, networks and software systems for vulnerabilities and risks and ensuring all hardware and software applications are up to date.
As a Cyber Security Specialist your primary objective is to protect the confidentiality, integrity and availability of the organisations data. You will respond to and resolve network incidents, and create and implement regular security audits across computer hardware and software programmes to validate they are processing data as expected.
Specialists in cyber security need to balance a strong technical ability with an inquisitive intuition that enables them to continually keep one-step ahead of an increasingly daring and ruthless cohort of hackers and organised crime. Consequently, Cyber Security Specialists are among the most sought after professionals in the tech sector, commanding robust salaries as technology and security concerns continue to develop.
Main duties and responsibilities
As Cyber Security Specialist you are responsible for discovering vulnerabilities and risks in the businesses networks, software systems and data centres. You will undertake ongoing vulnerability scans, monitor network data and ensure hardware and software applications are kept up to date. Typical duties and responsibilities include:
Skills and experience
To be successful in this role, you must have strong technical skills, be able to think critically to identify potential threats and be a creative problem solver. You must have a deep understanding of the network infrastructure and software and the ability to troubleshoot problems and make decisions in high-stress situations. You must also be able to communicate effectively with other members of your team and report your findings to executives and colleagues. Other skills and experience required:
The UK had the highest number of cyber-crime victims per million internet users at 4783 in 2022 – up 40% over 2020 figures. The country with the next highest number of victims per million internet users in 2022 was the USA, with 1494, a 13% decrease over 2020.
76% of respondents in a 2022 case study covering the US, Canada, UK, Australia and New Zealand say their organisation has suffered at least 1 cyber-attack this year. This is a large increase over the 55% figure in 2020.