Your Next Move: Cybersecurity Specialist

by Brianna White | Oct 02, 2017
Your Next Move: Get the Inside Scoop on IT Job Roles

This article is part of an IT Career News series called “Your Next Move.” These articles take an inside look at the roles related to CompTIA certifications. Each article includes the responsibilities, qualifications, related job titles and salary range for the role. As you consider the next move in your IT career, check back with CompTIA to learn more about your job prospects and how to get there.

There's no quetion thatCyber-criminals are on the rise, targeting businesses of all sizes, government agencies, financial institutes and military organizations around the world. If you have a passion for resolving highly complex issues, cybersecurity specialist might be the job for you.

What Is a Cybersecurity Specialist?

Cybersecurity specialists must continually adapt to stay a step ahead of cyber-attackers. They must remain up to date on the latest methods attackers are using to infiltrate computer systems and IT security.

Other duties include:

  • Keeping a close watch for the organization’s networks and making sure there are no security breaches. When a breach does occur, they must be able to investigate a violation.
  • Protect sensitive information by installing and using software, such as firewalls and data encryption programs.
  • Document security breaches and the extent of the damage caused by the breaches through extensive reports.
  • Simulate attacks to look for vulnerabilities in their systems before they can be exploited.

How to Become a Cybersecurity Specialist

Most cybersecurity specialist positions require a bachelor’s degree in a computer-related field. Although a bachelor’s degree is important for this role, employers also take experience and certifications into consideration. Certifications, like CompTIA Security+, prove you have the skillset and knowledge to complete the tasks the position demands and can help you get into the cybersecurity field. Becoming a cybersecurity specialist opens up a range of opportunities for you to explore along the cybersecurity career pathway, including security analyst, penetration tester and security architect.

The Details

Salary Range

The median annual wage for cybersecurity specialist is $81,000 (

Job Outlook

Cybersecurity specialist is growing much faster than the average for all occupations. It is projected to grow 18 percent from 2014 to 2024.

Job Titles Related to Help Desk Technician

  • Information Security Specialist
  • IT Security Specialist
  • Network Security Specialist

Will your next move be cybersecurity specialist? If so, check out CompTIA Security+ to get you there.


  • Hickson Meenda

    Tuesday, October 10, 2017

    In Zambia how do I study the same or get certified

  • dmccraw

    Tuesday, October 10, 2017

    Hi, Hickson! You can learn more about CompTIA testing and how to find a testing center here: And if you're interested in CompTIA CySA+, go to the product page and click on Preparation to find training options: Good luck!

  • Md

    Wednesday, October 11, 2017

    Hello , I have a diploma in computer technology can I apply for CySA+

  • dmccraw

    Wednesday, October 11, 2017

    Hi, Md! While our exams are open to anyone who would like to take them, for CySA+, we recommend having 3-4 years of hands-on cybersecurity experience in order to have the knowledge to pass. Download the exam objectives and sample questions and see if you're ready for CySA+ or if you might be better taking another certification, such as Security+. Good luck!

  • Jas

    Wednesday, October 18, 2017

    Hi, how long is the SY0-401 test available for?

  • Wednesday, October 18, 2017

    Hi, Jas! Thanks for your question. SY0-401 will be available for about six more months since SY0-501 comes out this month.

  • Elena

    Tuesday, December 19, 2017

    Thanks for the overview! I look forward to future addition to this series.

  • Mike

    Friday, April 20, 2018

    I am a career changer. I have a bachelors in Bussiness Administration and and MBA. I am currently enrolled in an undergrad certificate program in cybesecurity and will be taking the Security+ and Network+ certification exams. Will this be enough to start a career in cyber security or will I need to do a second bachelors?

  • Monday, April 23, 2018

    Hi, Mike! Thanks for your comment. It sounds like you are well on your way to a cybersecurity career. In IT, experience and certifications can play as much, if not more of, a role than advanced degrees. That said, it will vary from employer to employer, and you'll need a combination of credentials, a strong cover letter and resume, and a solid interview to land the job. Remember that a career is a journey, so you may start in a role like cybersecurity specialist or junior analyst, but over time, you'll gain the experience you need to work your way up. Good luck!

  • Dabwitso Kasauka

    Tuesday, May 22, 2018

    Hi, is the SY0-401 exam still available or has been phased out as of this date? Thank you.

  • Tuesday, May 22, 2018

    Hi, Dabwitso! Thanks for your question. SY0-401 will be available through July 31, 2018. Good luck!

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