Your Next Move: Cybersecurity Engineer

by Jennifer Sherwood | Nov 20, 2017

Your Next Move: Get the Inside Scoop on IT Job RolesThis 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.

Want to feel like you’re defending a castle? A career as a cybersecurity engineer could be for you! It’s one of those essential roles that keeps things running smoothly. As the digital world keeps growing, information security is number one, and it’s especially true for companies and organizations. Cybersecurity engineer careers are always evolving to keep up with the hackers and cyber-criminals who continuously find new ways to infiltrate systems and steal private information. Cybersecurity engineers protect systems from unauthorized access.

What Is a Cybersecurity Engineer?

Cybersecurity engineers work to build and maintain a system that’s safe against cyberattacks. They focus on fixing and protecting these systems and stay up to date on new technology so they can keep their system secure. Cybersecurity engineers work closely with a company’s IT team to build an emergency plan to get things up and running quickly following a disaster.  

Some responsibilities of a cybersecurity engineer include:

  • Creating new solutions to solve existing security issues.
  • Enhancing security capabilities by evaluating new technologies and processes.
  • Defining, implementing and maintaining corporate security policies.
  • Configuring and installing firewalls and intrusion detection systems.
  • Responding to information security issues.
  • Supervising changes in software, hardware, facilities, telecommunications and user needs.
  • Recommending modifications in legal, technical and regulatory areas that affect IT security.

How to Become a Cybersecurity Engineer

Cybersecurity engineers work on the front line of information assurance, performing the nitty-gritty, detail-oriented tasks for companies and government organizations around the world. Their education, skills and training are the only things that stand between us and future attacks. The mass responsibility they carry for engineering systems puts them at the top of the hierarchy in cybersecurity teams and has made having a graduate degree almost standard for IT jobs that involve security engineering. Many of the skills for a career as a cybersecurity engineer can be validated with CompTIA Cybersecurity Analyst (CySA+) and  CompTIA Advanced Security Practitioner (CASP). These show that someone has the necessary skills to work in a cybersecurity position where good judgement, high-level troubleshooting and safe systems are important.

The Details

Salary Range

According to, the salary range for a cybersecurity engineer salary is $107,000 to $127,000 a year.

Knowledge, Skills and Abilities (KSAs) for Cybersecurity Engineers

  • Intrusion detection system, intrusion prevention system, penetration and vulnerability testing
  • Firewall and intrusion detection/prevention protocols
  • Secure coding practices, ethical hacking and threat modeling
  • Windows, UNIX and Linux operating systems
  • Virtualization technologies
  • MySQL/MSSQL database platforms
  • Identity and access management principles
  • Application security and encryption technologies
  • Secure network architectures
  • Subnetting, domain name server (DNS), encryption technologies and standards, virtual private networks (VPNs), virtual LANs (VLANs), voice over IP (VoIP) and other network routing methods
  • Network and web-related protocols (e.g., TCP/IP, user datagram protocol (UDP), IP security (IPSec), HTTP, HTTPS, routing protocols, etc.)
  • Advanced persistent threats (APT), phishing and social engineering, network access controllers (NAC), gateway anti-malware and enhanced authentication

Job Titles Related to Cybersecurity Engineer

  • Security Engineer
  • Data Security Engineer
  • Network Security Engineer
  • Information Assurance(IA)/IT Security Engineer

Read about more IT jobs featured in Your Next Move.


  • shahwali

    Wednesday, June 27, 2018

    Dears, I would like to attend CASP exam is there any prerequisite for this exam if yes kindly let me know

  • Wednesday, June 27, 2018

    Hi, Shahwali! While CompTIA exams don't have strict prerequisites, we do recommend that for CASP you have at least 10 years working in IT and at least 5 years of hands-on technical security experience. You can read more here:

  • Femi

    Tuesday, July 3, 2018

    What's the prerequisites for Cybersecurity analyst. I have been working in IT field for over 10 years especially hardware and maintenance, buy I am beginning to have interest in CYBER security

  • Tuesday, July 3, 2018

    Hi, Femi! CompTIA certifications don't have set prerequisites, but we do recommend a certain amount of experience to set yourself up for exam success. We recommend having Network+, Security+ or equivalent knowledge and a minimum of 3-4 years of hands-on information security or related experience before taking CySA+. To see how your skills match up and prepare for your exam, download the exam objectives and practice questions. Good luck!

  • Elijah

    Friday, August 17, 2018

    how old do i have to be to get these certifications? and if there are recommended amounts of experience for the exams, what types of experience? do i need certain certs to prove that i have the experience before i take the exam?

  • Friday, August 24, 2018

    Hi, Elijah! Thanks for your question. There are no formal prerequisites, such as age or education, to get CompTIA certifications. That said, we do recommend having a certain level of hands-on experience for our certifications. These vary from certification to certification and can be found under Exam Details on the webpage for the certification. Good luck!

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