The term cybersecurity analyst or information security analyst refers to those who have the task of monitoring networks and IT infrastructures to ensure their security

Who is the cybersecurity analyst

The term cybersecurity analyst or information security analyst refers to those who have the task of monitoring networks and IT infrastructures to ensure their security.

The duties of a security analyst can include managing firewalls and network updates, restricting access to files and credentials, as well as hacking your own systems to discover any weaknesses and more.

The ideal preparation for a security analyst is a computer science degree. Applicants for cybersecurity analyst jobs are also aided in their search by industry-recognized professional certifications, work experience, and internships.

How to become a security analyst

The good news is that there are many employment opportunities for cybersecurity professionals who can position themselves appropriately, as the number of opportunities and new types of occupations that fall into the cybersecurity analyst category continue to increase.

Therefore, the first step to becoming a cybersecurity analyst is identifying the type of job you want to do and linking it to the necessary training and credentials. It's wise to prepare in advance, because even an entry-level security analyst job may require specialized training.

Cybersecurity analysts can work with a variety of computers and computer networks. Security analysts are found anywhere large amounts of data are stored, exchanged, or used by a computer, including corporate databases, banking networks, office networks, and military intelligence.

An experienced security analyst will likely be familiar with advanced concepts in hardware, software, and data management and storage.

Ransomware attacks, social engineering assaults, and the theft or compromise of critical information within a business or organization are the top three cybersecurity threats to computer networks of all sizes.

This means that cybersecurity analysts must be prepared to deal with a wide variety of threats and try to fix security problems both internally and externally.

Skills and experience of analysts

The required cybersecurity skills and experience vary greatly from job to job. Some security analyst job postings look for people with specific skills, such as managing a proprietary network, training other employees, or conducting penetration testing of the organization's digital properties.

For students and early career professionals, a key tactic to understanding which skills are most valuable and marketable for the job is to study the different job descriptions demanded by employers. This research should begin to show trends and reveal how current skills and experience match opportunities. Understanding the current job market will also help you make decisions about the types of security certifications and degrees to pursue.

This research should reveal trends and the relationship between current opportunities and skills. In-depth knowledge of the labor market will also help to formulate judgments on safety certifications and educational qualifications to apply for.

Despite the wide variety of positions available for cybersecurity analysts, there are some characteristics or skills that are typical of the industry:

  • Knowledge of programming. Since cybersecurity analysts are responsible for protecting digital infrastructures, it makes sense that cybersecurity professionals need to know core programming languages ​​such as C, C++, PHP, Python, Java, SQL, Ruby, JavaScript, and Assembly, as well as some knowledge of programming basis.
  • Analytics. Security analysts must be able to derive information from numerous inputs, because they work with data from different sources to make decisions.
  • Detail orientation. Most of the work done by cybersecurity analysts involves examining minute elements, such as computer code or network commands, that could have significant effects.
  • Foresight. Security analysts must project future events using present data and trends and then recommend appropriate security measures.

What cybersecurity analysts do

In a group or company, a cybersecurity analyst often fills several roles. It could be a mix between a trainer or instructor, a systems designer, a policy maker and a police officer.

While they are often called upon to manage security events, security analysts are more likely to spend their time formulating rules and procedures and reviewing best practices.

The security analyst is expected to be proactive in preventing security breaches before they happen. This could involve regularly updating your software and systems, testing your computer system and firewall by attempting to log in much like hackers would, or identifying security holes in your operating systems or computer code.

Job Description for a Cybersecurity Analyst

A simple scan of a few of the hundreds of security analyst job descriptions reveals that the positions offered range from entry-level to more specialized security and threat mitigation professionals.

The common job criteria for hiring an information security analyst, despite the great variability in skills and certifications required for different professions, should be as follows:

  • Safeguard sensitive data, encrypt data streams and create and maintain firewall.
  • Create strategies and technologies to protect computer files and data from accidental deletion or modification by malware or other attack vectors.
  • Create strategies and protocols to respond to data breaches and attacks.
  • Keep up to date with the latest attack vectors and build methods to defend against them.
  • To protect your organization's networks and data, track your software and user activity.
  • To ensure that security best practices are followed, create and implement periodic risk assessments.
  • Discuss security issues with staff members and provide training to other users on how to strengthen the security of personal and group information.

The future of cybersecurity analysts

Security analysts will be in high demand as the digital revolution continues to spread across various sectors and industries. Traditional cybersecurity experts worked in specialized fields related to more exposed economic sectors, including military, banking and finance, and oil and gas.

However, in order to better protect their businesses and operations, consumer brands and ordinary enterprises are now hiring cybersecurity analysts.

Jobs are expected to grow at a significantly faster rate than in other economic sectors in the coming years as more people join the workforce.

How much do cybersecurity analysts earn in Italy

Becoming a cybersecurity analyst also comes with high earning potential, as well as the lure of interesting work, the growing number of career prospects, and the range of ways to prepare for these professions.

There is a high demand for jobs in the cybersecurity sector in Europe. The UK, Luxembourg and Switzerland all have a booming security sector which could offer unique opportunities for high wage and job seekers.

In Italy, the National Cybersecurity Agency is announcing competitions for the hiring of 300 people during 2023. Furthermore, tax incentives are offered for the return to Italy of professional figures currently residing abroad.

According to Domenico Dominoni, Claroty's Southern European Sales Director, 100.000 Cybersecurity professionals are missing in Italy and are currently nowhere to be found. And furthermore, according to a global survey conducted by Pollfish in September 2021, “90% of respondents say they want to hire more industrial cybersecurity professionals and roughly the same number (88%) say it has been difficult to find enough candidates with the skills and experience necessary to correctly manage the IT security of an OT network”.

The annual salary of a cybersecurity analyst in 2022 varies from a minimum of 26.250 Euros to a maximum of 49.500 Euros for professionals with more experience.

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