How to become an Information Security Analyst

How to become an Information Security Analyst

How to become an Information Security Analyst

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How to become an Information Security Analyst

What is an Information Security Analyst?

An information Security Analyst is typically an organization’s first line of defense against cyber-attacks and vulnerabilities, working with a team to manage access control and reporting to Compliance Officers and Technical Solutions Directors.

As a current listing at Amazon says, Information Security Analysts, leverage data analysis techniques, human intuition, expert security knowledge and an array of tools to uncover malicious activity; maintain familiarity with multiple systems and attacker tactics, techniques, and procedures; perform rapid analysis of real-time data feeds, looking for indicators of compromise; perform preliminary malware analysis to help determine initial infection vectors, behavior or to assess the extent of an issue; and develop original detection rules for various monitoring systems based on current threats, vulnerabilities or discoveries.

As you can see, an Information Security Analyst wears a lot of security hats and really holds together a security team, making this role highly sought after and a great direction to take your career.

How to become an Information Security Analyst

What is the Average Salary?

According to Payscale.com, the minimum salary for this role is $47,555 and the maximum is $104,537, making the median salary $70,400. Which also makes the Information Security Analyst role a competitively attractive one.

How to become an Information Security Analyst

What are an Information Security Analyst’s Responsibilities?

Information Security Analysts have a slew of responsibilities regardless of what organization you’re applying for. Many of them require knowledge of specific scripting languages and environments, but all will appreciate a well rounded understanding of multiple environments and languages for a holistic understanding. Here’s a few responsibilities I found across multiple job listings:

  • Analyze system vulnerability scans, penetration tests and risk assessments
  • Triage and short-term analysis of real-time data feeds for potential intrusions
  • Basic malware analysis
  • Authoring and implementing original detection rules for various monitoring systems
  • Configure and analyze security tools and software
  • Design and development of custom security tools and solutions
  • Document access management procedures
  • Document, prioritize and analyze security threats, incidents and key metrics
  • Overtime, weekend and evening hours (sometimes expected)
  • Collaborate across departments and support partner relationships
  • Support strategic business objectives
  • Follow up on alerts to mitigate compromised endpoints
  • Assist in analysis and reporting of computer forensic investigations
  • And many, many more

How to become an Information Security Analyst

What Educational Background is required?

A BS in computer science, technical security or a related field is often suggested to make you a competitive applicant, but experience can supplement this requirement.

It seems the absolute minimum requirement for an applicant is to have at least three years of experience in the cyber security field, though some ask for more specific experience. Most job listings also detail environments, scripting languages and tools they would like applicants to be familiar with. Some of these typically include: Windows, Mac, Linux familiarity and intimate knowledge of Python scripting language among others.

Also, this is one of the cyber security career paths which require applicants to have obtained critical certifications such as CISSP and CEH, as well as the willingness to continue their education throughout their career to ensure you are up-to-date on the most current tools, techniques and methodologies.

How to become an Information Security Analyst

What Certifications should I take?

The more certifications the better for this job role. Here are some musts along with some suggestions:

Must have:

CISSP- Certified Information Systems Security Professional

CEH- Certified Ethical Hacker

CSA- Certified Security Analyst

Suggested:

Linux+ Administration

Basic Malware Analysis

Cyber Threat Detection and Mitigation

Network Traffic Analysis

Cyber Security Advanced Persistent Threat Detection

Ethical Hacking with Python (no associated certification)

Extra Credit:

CHFI- Computer Hacking Forensic Investigator

How to become an Information Security Analyst

Where should I start?

Becoming an Information Security Analyst requires advanced knowledge and experience. If you’re just starting your cyber security career path, starting with a BS in computer science or CompTIA’s Security+ certification is a great way to get started. For those with a technical background, start working towards crucial certifications such as CISSP as well as more current and up-to-date certifications as well as finding mentors and gaining practical experience working in a variety of environments and with one or two of the more popular scripting languages.

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How to become an Information Security Analyst

Information Security Analyst not for you? Learn how to become an Incident Responder here!

CyberTraining 365 is an online academy that offers nearly 1,000 hours of relevant and cutting edge cyber security training. Our training provides the most in demand industry certification prep courses including EC-Council, CompTIA, (ISC)2 and Cisco; all taught by leading cyber security experts. All of our offerings are aligned with the national initiative for cyber security education (NICE) and ensure the most up-to-date information for this constantly shifting field. With engaging content in a scenario-based format, CyberTraining 365 uses bite-sized micro-learning methodology ensures learners are not overwhelmed with information. On Demand LMS platform has white-label capabilities ideal for internal training purposes.

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