So Many Jobs... So Many Job Titles
There are a lot of inconsistencies and disagreements surrounding cybersecurity. Even how the term is spelled – is it one word, or two? (Miriam-Webster says it’s one word, so we’ll go with that.) The lack of agreement and cohesion within the industry has contributed to the workforce gap – meaning there are lots of jobs out there and not enough people to fill them.
Another inconsistency in cybersecurity that contributes to the industry skills gap is job titles. For every one position, there are essentially a dozen job titles that could describe it. This confusion contributes to the mismatch between employers and employees.
Applying for a cybersecurity job doesn’t have to be confusing. Let’s take a quick look at a few of the most common job titles you’ll see in cybersecurity.
Common Entry-Level Positions
- Help desk at a dedicated cybersecurity company
- Quality assurance for cybersecurity software company (recommended easiest point of entry - hard boring work but fast-track to Sr. level roles)
- Cybersecurity intern for roles that don't require much code (college not always needed)
- SOC/NOC specialist/engineer (these roles are sometimes different at companies, but sometimes the same)
- Helpdesk escalation engineer at a cybersecurity company (sometimes called level 2 or 3)
- Associate/Junior cybersecurity consultant
- Junior penetration tester
- Cybersecurity intern for code-related roles (college is not always required for these roles)
- Cybersecurity consultant (lots of travel opportunities – high pay)
- Cybersecurity engineer/analyst
- Data scientist specialized in cybersecurity (high pay potential – demanding work)
- Forensics specialists of all sorts
- Disaster recovery specialist
- Project management at a cybersecurity company (high pay potential)
- Software engineer for cybersecurity software
- Malware analyst
- Lab analyst
- Penetration tester
- Office of the CISO team
- Many, many more
Senior/Executive Level Positions*
- Senior-level role in any of the previously listed positions (someone who is incredibly specialized and has been in the role for years – not a generalist)
- Principal engineer at a cybersecurity company
- Product manager for a cybersecurity company
- CISO (Chief Information Security Officer)
*A senior-level position can have a salary that's just as high as a CISO
The Key to Success – and a High Salary
If you want to make in cybersecurity – and really anything in life – is to become a specialist. Specialization is essentially getting really good at one thing. So pick something you like doing and stick with it because it will lead to high salaries and career success.