Does a Career in Cybersecurity Require Coding? Cybersecurity has become an incredibly popular and in-demand field, but it’s also one that can be difficult to break into without the right training. With numerous certifications available, it’s important to know what they cover, what they expect from you, and how they can help you begin your career in cybersecurity. The reality of cybersecurity goes beyond the basics of coding and breaking into networks.
Does a Career in Cybersecurity Require Coding?
- Do you Need To Know Coding to get into a field in cyber security?
- The need for security
- The Importance of Cyber Security
- So why learn code anyway, if you don’t need to write your own programs?
- What are the Possibilities For Getting Into A Field In Cyber Security
- How to Get Better at Cybersecurity Without Writing Code
- What Security Experts Look For In Job Candidates
Do you Need To Know Coding to get into a field in cyber security?
You might be wondering whether you need to know coding to get into cyber security. You do not need to know how to code, but that doesn’t mean it can’t help you. Your understanding of what goes on behind your computer screen could actually make your education and career in cyber security more valuable. While some of us are more tech-savvy than others, we all have a relationship with technology, especially as children.
It doesn’t matter if you remember that momentous day when you first figured out how to work that VCR or when you got your first cell phone; those formative moments are still building blocks toward an eventual career in information security. For example, when I was five years old and my dad took me to my first computer store, he bought me my very own programmable calculator.
Little did he know it would one day help me get into information security. That device only had 50 pre-programmed functions, but even then I couldn’t resist trying to reprogram it. It turns out that little calculator got me hooked on understanding technology and always asking why? With every new device I encountered as a child, from video games to cell phones, I always wondered how things worked under their shiny exteriors.
The need for security
There’s no arguing that cybersecurity is in high demand. As more and more threats emerge, companies need to have their digital assets protected by professionals who know how to stay ahead of cybercriminals. And, as online technologies become ever-more embedded into our personal and professional lives, there will be an increased need for those who can protect these resources from vulnerabilities. In fact, according to IDC (via Forrester), U.S.-based firms spent $65 billion on information security products and services last year alone.
While there’s no doubt that having strong computer science skills will help you succeed in cybersecurity, it’s not something every candidate needs to have. In fact, some of the top cybersecurity firms around—such as Absolute and Kaspersky Lab—do not require coding for employment. And even if these companies don’t require it now, with cybercriminals getting smarter and stronger all of the time, they may find themselves needing to lean on those with these skills eventually.
It may be years before we know whether or not coding is something that is going to become an absolute requirement for a career in cybersecurity; but at least right now, there are still plenty of opportunities available for those who don’t have any programming skills under their belt.
The Importance of Cyber Security
The need for cyber security has never been greater. Just think of recent high-profile attacks and data breaches like Equifax, Yahoo, and Target. And unfortunately, it’s not just big corporations that are at risk. The United States government suffers over 600 million cyberattacks per day. Organizations are recognizing their vulnerability to attack, which is why they’re hiring experts who specialize in cybersecurity to defend against potential breaches and keep their data safe.
But how do you know if you have what it takes to succeed in cybersecurity? It might surprise you, but a degree or background in computer science isn’t necessarily required. In fact, many jobs don’t require any technical skills at all! Instead, employers look for individuals with strong problem-solving skills and critical thinking abilities. So while technical knowledge can be helpful, those without coding experience can still thrive as long as they have other strengths on their side.
So why learn code anyway, if you don’t need to write your own programs?
- Penetration Tester:
- Malware Analyst:
- Security Architect:
The ability to understand how programs work is crucial for effective security work. Because if you don’t understand how things are coded and know how vulnerable they are to outside intrusion, then there’s no way you can protect them. So it helps to learn some code—even if you aren’t planning on becoming a programmer. You may also be surprised to learn that many cybersecurity careers don’t require a background in programming at all; some of them even prefer non-technical candidates who have good communication skills and management experience. Here are just three types of jobs in cyber security that do not necessarily require coding:
If you want to break into your own systems before an attacker does, then penetration testing might be for you. A penetration tester will try their best to hack into your network and see what weaknesses need patching up before real attackers exploit them.
Malware (malicious software) runs rampant online, from viruses to worms to Trojan horses. A malware analyst studies these malicious programs so they can better defend against them, figuring out how they work and where they come from so patches can be created against them. You’ll need an understanding of programming languages like Python or Java to understand how these malicious pieces of code are written, but you don’t necessarily have to know how to create them yourself.
Security architects develop solutions for companies by mapping out potential security threats and designing ways to prevent those threats from harming a company’s infrastructure. This requires an understanding of all aspects of computer security—from hardware vulnerabilities down to human-software interaction issues—and knowing what solutions will best address each threat based on your client’s business model. So even if you never plan on writing code yourself, it helps tremendously if you understand at least some of its fundamentals as part of your overall career path in cybersecurity.
What are the Possibilities For Getting Into A Field In Cyber Security
On average, it takes about 10 years to transition from college graduate to cybersecurity expert. This is because there are so many different career paths that can be taken within cybersecurity. Some professionals prefer to stay with one company, while others go out on their own and open up their own businesses. Some of these paths include system analyst, cyber systems developer, and risk analyst. Each position has its own duties and roles, but they all require at least a little bit of coding knowledge and experience in order to be successful.
How to Get Better at Cybersecurity Without Writing Code
These days, everything we do online is handled by software—everything from email to social media to file storage and more. This means that cybersecurity has become an increasingly important part of professional life and education. But while software development skills are important, they aren’t required. Instead, there are other ways to get better at cybersecurity—ways that don’t require you to learn how to code! Whether you’re interested in security but want to avoid writing code or if you want to take your interest further but still don’t want to code, read on for some helpful ideas.
If you’re not interested in software development or don’t want to work with computers for your career, there are still ways to get better at cybersecurity. With regard to programming, consider learning how websites and programs are developed as opposed to learning how they actually function. Taking courses in business, marketing or management can also help you understand what cybersecurity specialists do—even if it doesn’t help you learn directly—and will make it easier for you to communicate with coders on projects.
What Security Experts Look For In Job Candidates
Hiring for cybersecurity positions can be difficult and time-consuming. But there’s one thing that almost all experts agree on: Having coding or technical experience is not required. While it may help, it is just one small piece of what they look for when hiring new employees. After all, most of today’s challenges come from social engineering and system malfunctions, which don’t require someone to be able to write computer code.
This makes an emphasis on softer skills like interpersonal communication, teamwork, and adaptability more important than ever before. That doesn’t mean people without technical knowledge are unqualified for cybersecurity jobs; rather, it just means that people with expertise in other areas will also have a place here.