With the advancement of technology, the risk and threats of cyber-attacks have also increased. Moreover, in 2020, the spread of the COVID-19 coronavirus has not only affected the global economy but has also resulted in the growth of cyber-attacks.
In April 2020, the WHO reported a five times increase in cyber attacks. It issued a statement revealing that around 450 active email addresses and passwords of its staff and thousands belonging to others working on the novel coronavirus response were leaked online.
As more and more companies opted for the Work From Home model to limit the spread of the virus, the workforce moved from corporate IPs to home or shared Wi-Fi networks, getting exposed to new cyber vulnerabilities. While the world is fearing the pandemic and adjusting to remote offices, hackers are leaving no stone unturned to seize the opportunity to advance their cyber crimes and exploit individuals, government institutions, and even large organizations.
With cyber threats becoming more prevalent and rising exponentially, there is a need for individual IT professionals as well as organizations to make fundamental changes in their approach to cybersecurity to maintain the desired security posture. The risk of cyber-attacks is growing enormously in 2020 and so is the need for cybersecurity professionals.
According to Cybersecurity Ventures, there is a critical shortage in cybersecurity talent and the number of unfilled cybersecurity jobs is expected to rise from 1 million in 2013 to 3.5 million in 2021.
Due to the increasing severity and frequency of cyber attacks, there is a need to bridge the cybersecurity skill gap and fill the shortage of cyber talent. If you want to learn cybersecurity and build a career in this domain, then this post is certainly going to help you. In this post, we have listed the most in-demand cybersecurity skills that you can learn in 2020 to begin your career.
What is Cybersecurity?
Cybersecurity refers to the process of protecting computers, servers, networks, mobile devices, and data from any type of cyber-attack.
Cybersecurity Course Recommendations
Here is a list of some of the online cybersecurity courses to help you gain knowledge in this area:
Top Cybersecurity Threats in 2020
As per Cybersecurity Ventures, the damage related to cybercrime is projected to hit $6 trillion annually by 2021 from $3 trillion in 2015.
As cybercrime remains the greatest threat to every organization in the world, let’s take a look at the top cybersecurity threats for 2020.
Phishing is a type of social engineering attack in which carefully targeted digital messages are transmitted to people, to steal their sensitive data, such as login credentials, credit card numbers, and other financial information.
Cryptojacking refers to the malicious use of your computer by hackers to mine cryptocurrency without consent. Since mining for a cryptocurrency requires enormous computer processing power, hackers mine cryptocurrency on someone else’s systems. It can slow down your computer and put your security at risk.
Deepfakes are photos, videos, or audio recordings created by cyber criminals using Artificial Intelligence for illicit use. Such videos are made by swapping faces in videos or altering the audio of videos.
4. Internet of Things (IoT) Attacks
The Internet of Things (IoT) enables us to stay connected at work as well as home. The devices connected to the IoT include laptops and tablets, webcams, routers, smartwatches, household appliances, automobiles, home security systems, and more. If the hackers get control of these, it can result in the loss of sensitive data.
5. Ransomware Attacks
In a ransomware attack, hackers access the computer of the victim and freeze it. The hackers then unlock the infected system if the victim pays a ransom. Ransomware attacks may cost the victims billions of dollars every year, as attackers deploy technologies that enable them to fetch the organization’s databases and get access to the information for ransom.
Most In-Demand Cybersecurity Skills to Learn in 2020
1. Understanding of Hacking
To protect your organization from cyber-attacks, you will need to know how to “ethically hack.” To understand how a system could be attacked and to come up with an effective solution, you will need to learn the same skills as a hacker.
The Complete Ethical Hacking Course Bundle on StationX
Learn Ethical Hacking From Scratch on Udemy
Certified Ethical Hacker Certification by EC Council
2. Cloud Security
With more and more organizations moving their data to the cloud, there is a need for cloud-based security providers to protect their data and keep it secure. As organizations migrate to the cloud, they need security professionals who are cloud-savvy. Thus, the cloud security skill will provide you with the foundations you need to secure data in the cloud.
Cloud Security Basics on Coursera
Certified Cloud Security Professional on Skillsoft
3. Computer Forensics Skills
Computer forensics and cybersecurity often work hand-in-hand to promote information security. A foundation in computer forensics can help you advance in your cybersecurity career. Both focus on the protection of digital assets and intelligence. While cybersecurity is focused on the prevention of attacks, computer forensics focuses on what happens after a cyber-attack occurs.
Computer Forensics on edX
4. Blockchain Security
Blockchain is an evolving technology and is likely to become the foundation of various security systems, such as mobile, IoT devices, supply chain integration, network control, and identity solutions. It offers unprecedented data security because to destroy or corrupt a blockchain, the attacker will have to destroy the data stored on every user’s computer in the global network. Blockchain security results in a lower risk of getting attacked by hackers due to the complexity required to enter and penetrate such a network.
5. Artificial Intelligence (AI)
Artificial intelligence can help security experts to understand the cyber environment and identify abnormal activity. It also helps cybersecurity professionals by providing automated techniques and support whenever cyber threats are detected. AI can also provide security professionals with additional resources to defend vulnerable networks and data from cyber attackers.
Introduction to Artificial Intelligence for Beginners Course on Simplilearn
6. Programming Skills
A basic understanding of programming languages, such as Java, PHP, C, or C++ is critical for any cybersecurity professional. Knowledge of programming languages will help them to detect the chances of attacks on the system and to develop concrete counter-plans accordingly.
C for Everyone – Programming Fundamentals on Coursera
C Programming Language Fundamentals on Pluralsight
7. IoT Security
IoT security focuses on safeguarding connected devices and networks on the internet. A huge number of IoT devices make their security a high priority and is important for the future well-being of the internet ecosystem. By learning this skill, you will be able to explore current security and privacy-related concerns in the IoT domain.
Cybersecurity and the Internet of Things on Coursera
8. Communication Skills
As a cybersecurity expert, you will be working closely with different teams and departments. It is important to be able to communicate effectively to explain your issues, concerns, and solutions to others. You should be able to convey even the most technical information to individuals of different levels in a comprehensible manner.
Business Fundamentals: Effective Communication on FutureLearn
9. Problem Solving Skills
As a cybersecurity professional, you may at times find yourself surrounded by problems. A problem-solving approach can help you find innovative ways to solve even the most complex security challenges in the ever-evolving field of technology.
Problem Solving with Advanced Analytics on Udacity
How To Build Cybersecurity Skills?
An online course in cybersecurity is a good way to begin your journey. An online cybersecurity course will teach you all the basic as well advanced concepts of cybersecurity, thus, enhancing your cybersecurity skills and other related technical skills. However, cybersecurity is a phenomenally complex and fast-growing field. So you need to study from your own sources, read blogs, follow experts, and learn on the job to stay on top of your game.
The cybersecurity industry has great growth potential and can offer you promising career opportunities. Since it continues to suffer from a shortage of cybersecurity professionals and experts, it is the best time for you to learn cybersecurity skills and enter the market.
Moreover, it is an evergreen industry. As more and more people will keep using the internet for their personal or professional needs, the hackers will also keep using it in an unethical way. With the increase in the use of the internet and a rise in cyber-attacks, there will be a continuous need for cybersecurity experts, making your career as a cybersecurity expert more stable than before.
In case you have recently completed a professional course/certification,