The cybersecurity field suffers from a workforce gap of more than 2.7 million throughout the world, according to the professional organization (ISC)²’s 2021 study.
In the United States, that translates to nearly 600,000 unfilled positions. This need means that people who want to switch careers during the Great Resignation have a clear pathway to a tech job. In Baltimore, for instance, Salary.com states that entry level cybersecurity analysts make $74,237 on average.
Those seeking to land such a position can use this list of resources to help build the necessary cybersecurity skills:
This Baltimore-based cybersecurity talent training company company uses ESCALATE, a talent screening platform that assesses and prepares cybersecurity professionals while guaranteeing they have the requisite applicable knowledge for cyber jobs.
Although the company trains people from all backgrounds to become software engineers, the skills its programs teach are relevant to cybersecurity careers as well. The best way to defend a system is to know it well enough to break it yourself.
Baltimore city-based youth between the ages of 14 and 21 can build skills in game development, Python, cybersecurity, digital forensics and other development work through CodeWorks. The five-week program from computer science education nonprofit Code in the Schools and the city’s YouthWorks initiative allows participants to make money while learning and working with local tech companies. The deadline for application, which must be done through of CodeWorks’ presenting entities (starting with YouthWorks), has been extended to April 14th.
This site allows users to practice cybersecurity skills through games called Capture-the-flag (CTF) challenges, which involve exploiting, solving and finding security issues in tech. You can use OverTheWire in tandem with such sites as CTFTime, which lists dozens of CTF challenge-based events, and Hacker101.
This Youtube channel is dedicated to helping people pass tests for cybersecurity certifications like CompTIA A+, Network+, and Security+. The channel goes through practice tests while teaching cybersecurity concepts with live study group videos. It also offers individual training courses on cybersecurity and information technology like social engineering, malware and network topologies.
Network Chuck is another major YouTuber, boasting 2 million subscribers, that produces content for those studying to earn CCNA, CompTIA A+, CompTIA Network+ and other IT certifications. With courses on ethical hacking in Linux, the channel can be a great place for wannabe cyber professionals to get their feet wet.
Donte Kirby is a 2020-2022 corps member for Report for America, an initiative of The Groundtruth Project that pairs young journalists with local newsrooms. This position is supported by the Robert W. Deutsch Foundation.-30-