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CYBER SECURITY AS A CAREER

Technology has submerged our lives so much that most of our daily activities are dependent on it. And with so many people using it as part of their lives, it has also emerged as a means for criminal 

activities. It is not just an individual who is threatened by illegal activities in cyberspace, but even an entire country’s security could be at risk.

For instance, one might recall 2006 train bombings in Mumbai, where terrorists used advanced techniques such as IP address masking for funds transfer and other communications. In 2008, there was news that the email system of the Indian Prime Minister’s Office was affected by a computer virus for three months, and upon investigating it was revealed that its computers were being remotely controlled. ‘CERT-In’ reports over 62,000 cyber attacks till mid May 2014.

Government admits these cyber attacks, but says can’t identify the culprits. India has not been able to identify the criminals behind cyber attacks against government establishments that were used to transmit classified information to overseas servers.

“It may be noted that due to complexities of the cyber domain, it has been difficult to identify the exact beneficiaries of these attacks,” Cabinet Secretary Mr. Ajit Seth wrote to top bureaucrats of all government departments while seeking strict compliance of cyber security policy at offices.

He warned that the country’s cyber space was witnessing an increase in “structured attacks” and added that cyber espionage was the main intention as most computers were found to have transmitted “classified information to transit servers placed outside the country”. However, he did not name any country.

Cyber Security is quickly becoming a hot issue. The term itself is relatively new. Many colleges and schools may still list their cyber security degree programs under more general terminology like network security, computer systems analyst, information security, IT or even criminal justice.

We predict that Cyber Security will be one of the biggest and fastest job growth areas in the coming decade. This high paying field is demanding and requires the security expert to constantly keep up with growing computer threats, attacks and changing technology. The great majority of companies have computer networks and must have cyber security personnel now to protect themselves.

Cyber security professionals protect data and systems in networks that are connected to the Internet. Cyber criminals or hackers strike in various ways by different techniques, which may erase your entire system’s data or someone can steal confidential information from your systems or even break into your systems and modify your files without your knowledge.

A computer hacker finds out the loopholes in a system and breaks into it, the information security professional, or an ethical hacker has a similar job. He needs to think like a hacker and find the loopholes in the system before a hacker can get to them.

One of the article from ‘The Times of India’ says, Cyber security industry to see huge growth in India: Study. The demand for cyber security professionals is on the rise and companies are willing to offer them as much Rs 80 lakh per anum, a study said.

According to a report by CISO Platform, a social media network dedicated to information security, the industry is likely to see a huge growth in India, going ahead. “As a number of transactions are increasing on the Internet, concerns for security will also increase and create good future growth prospects for the Indian security industry,” the report said.

Currently, the annual salary of chief information security officers (CISOs) ranges between Rs 12 lakhs and Rs 80 lakhs.  In contrast, salary of ethical hackers ranges from Rs 2 lakhs to Rs 15 lakhs, it said. The report further noted that the telecom/Internet service provider (ISP) vertical is the highest-paying, with an average salary of Rs 11.75 lakhs followed by banking/financial services at Rs 10.52 lakhs.

City-wise, Bangalore has the highest number of security professionals followed by NCR. But NCR takes the top slot with the highest average salary (Rs 8.6 lakh) for security professionals, followed by Bangalore (Rs 8.44 lakh).

“Every day, thousands of devices are getting connected to the Internet and it’s becoming important to avail of right information at the right time. So, it’s going to create job growth here,” the report said, adding that “the security industry in India has a long way to go”.

But the youth of the nation is not prepared yet for these challenging roles due to lack of awareness and lack of support. One should be passionate about learning the technology as it changes and be able to adapt those changes into their day to day life.

Students from various disciplines have lots of scope in cyber security domain as the demand for such jobs are high, but the supply is very less.

To be continued…

 

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