Enroll In Distance Learning Programs For IT Certificates
Sad to say, one of the fastest growing areas for crime is cyber crime. Many security experts who monitor this activity got their start through their online graduate degrees. Every time we turn around, there’s a news story about a new virus or worm invading computer systems throughout the world robbing people of not only their assets, but even their identities.
If anything, this has had a profound effect on computer security. It wasn’t too long ago one could pretty much know all there is about the profession. These days many now have to specialize in specific areas then expand their knowledge as they go. That doesn’t mean getting into the security arena is difficult. In fact, many people are choosing to learn about computer security through their online master. Most specialists usually start as certified technicians, administrators or programmers. From there, they decide to enter cyber security.
Among the possible responsibilities are detecting and eliminating any viruses or other malicious software slipped into a computer system, creating firewalls and other security programs to prevent such infiltration, repair any damaged systems, perform risk assessments and keep a user’s hardware as up to date as possible.
Computer security specialists may also do forensics for the police and other law enforcement organizations. They may also be called in by courts for advice or to testify as experts. These last two areas are rapidly growing places of employment within this profession.
If one is interested in entering the field, one usually starts by becoming a support technician, administrator or something similar. From there, it’s usually a good idea to sit down and consult with an online or traditional college career advisor. Usually, the ways one enters the field is to get a series of certificates, including Security Essentials, Firewall Analysis, Forensics and Systems Auditing. After getting the certificate, one is able to work in that specialty. The more an expert gets, the more areas one can work in.
One should also get online and do a little research about scholastic assistance. If the organization one works for doesn’t offer any sort of work-study, they can see what search engines offer in the form of scholarships, grants and even fellowships. As computer security is considered a STEM (science, tech, engineering and math) occupation, it’s open to a number of other forms of financial assistance not offered to many other professions.
The Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that there are current about 135,000 people working in computer security as of 2009. It expects that job openings will grow 20% by 2020. Average wages is estimated at $67,000, but can as much double depending on one’s knowledge, years of experience and what industry they worked in. Top guns in national security or in banking usually earn well into the $100,000 range.
One way to grow into this kind of specialist is with enrolling in an online college. That means there will be a growing need for security experts and those who pursue higher education, such as graduate degree programs, will be right at the front lines to develop more ways to stop these high tech crimes.