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Entry Level Cybersecurity Jobs with No Experience

Entry Level Cybersecurity Jobs with No Experience

Today, the doors are open for entry level cybersecurity jobs with no experience as demand for skilled cybersecurity professionals surges. The global cybersecurity workforce was estimated at 5.5 million in 2023, with an 8.7% growth, representing nearly 440,000 new positions.

The importance of cybersecurity cannot be overstated, as it plays a critical role in protecting sensitive data and systems from ever-evolving cyber threats. 

This article will guide aspiring professionals on how to secure entry-level cybersecurity jobs with no experience. It provides insights and actionable steps to launch a successful career in this dynamic industry.

The 5-Day Cybersecurity Job Challenge with the seasoned expert Tolulope Michael is an opportunity for you to understand the most effective method of landing a six-figure cybersecurity job.

Entry Level Cybersecurity Jobs with No Experience

PositionSalaryQualificationsCertificationsNew Jobs (Projected)Sector Growth (Present-2031)
Information Cybersecurity Analyst$119,984Bachelor’s in IT or Software EngineeringCompTIA Security+, Certified Ethical Hacker (CEH)16,800 annually32%
Systems Administrator$81,782Bachelor’s in IT or a related fieldRed Hat Certified Engineer (RHCE), Cisco Certified Network Associate (CCNA)N/AN/A
IT Support Specialist$54,837Associate’s degreeFamiliarity with customer support software (e.g., Freshdesk)N/AN/A
Junior Forensic Analyst$53,950Bachelor’s or Associate’s in Information TechnologyGIAC, International Association of Computer Investigative Specialists (IACIS)N/AN/A
Junior Cryptanalyst$58,754Bachelor’s in Computer Science or MathematicsEC-Council Certified Encryption Specialist (ECES), CompTIA PenTest+N/AN/A
Junior Penetration Tester$119,895Bachelor’s in Computer ScienceCertified Penetration Testing (CPENT)N/AN/A
Source Code Auditor$49,934Bachelor’s in Computer Science or ITN/AN/AN/A
Security Auditor$117,000Associate’s or Postgraduate in Computer Science or CybersecurityCertified Information Systems Auditor (CISA)N/AN/A
Junior Security Analyst$107,334Associate’s degree or higherCompTIA Cybersecurity Analyst (CySA+)N/AN/A
Entry Level Cybersecurity Jobs with No Experience

RELATED: Will Cybersecurity Be Automated?

Entry Level Cybersecurity Jobs with No Experience: The Cybersecurity Industry

High-Paying Cybersecurity Jobs Without a Tech Degree

The cybersecurity industry is experiencing unprecedented growth, driven by the increasing frequency and sophistication of cyber threats. Prior to 2024, there were approximately 3.5 million unfilled cybersecurity roles globally, a number expected to rise significantly. This surge is fueled by the critical need to protect digital assets across all sectors, from healthcare to finance to government institutions.

A common misconception is that breaking into cybersecurity requires extensive experience or advanced degrees. However, many entry-level positions are accessible to those with the right skills and certifications. Employers often prioritize practical knowledge and a demonstrated commitment to cybersecurity over formal education, making it a viable field for newcomers.

Understanding Entry-Level Roles

Entry Level Cybersecurity Jobs with No Experience
Entry Level Cybersecurity Jobs with No Experience

Entering the cybersecurity field without prior experience is feasible, especially if you focus on entry-level roles that offer a strong foundation for career growth. Here’s a closer look at some of these positions:

Information Cybersecurity Analyst:

  • Role Description: Information Cybersecurity Analysts safeguard computer networks and systems, monitoring for cyber threats and implementing security measures.
  • Average Salary: Median of $102,600.
  • Essential Skills and Certifications: Proficiency in setting up security platforms, patching vulnerabilities, and managing network security. Certifications like CompTIA Security+ and Certified Ethical Hacker are beneficial.

IT Support Specialist:

  • Role Description: IT Support Specialists provide technical assistance for computer systems, software, and hardware, troubleshooting issues, and maintaining system performance.
  • Average Salary: $53,221 annually.
  • Essential Skills and Certifications: General technical knowledge, including software installation and hardware setup, strong problem-solving and communication skills. Familiarity with customer support software like FreshDesk or SysAid is advantageous.

Junior Penetration Tester:

  • Role Description: Junior Penetration Testers simulate cyber attacks to identify vulnerabilities, using various tools and techniques to ethically hack into systems.
  • Average Salary: $87,117 annually.
  • Essential Skills and Certifications: Expertise in security systems, threat detection, and tools like Hashcat. Certified Penetration Testing (CPENT) certification is recommended.

System Administrator:

  • Role Description: System Administrators manage and maintain computer systems and networks, ensuring functionality and providing user support.
  • Average Salary: $76,861.
  • Essential Skills and Certifications: Proficient in managing systems, knowledge of various operating systems, and scripting for task automation. Certifications like Red Hat Certified Engineer and Cisco Certified Network Associate are beneficial.

Security Auditor:

  • Role Description: Security Auditors evaluate information systems to ensure compliance with security policies, identifying vulnerabilities and suggesting improvements.
  • Average Salary: $117,000 annually.
  • Essential Skills and Certifications: Strong understanding of operating systems, networks, and cloud computing, with skills in audit planning and execution. Certified Information Systems Auditor (CISA) certification is highly recommended.

READ ALSO: AI vs Automation Vs Orchestration Cybersecurity: What Are the Differences

How to Get Started Without Experience

Entry-Level Cybersecurity Jobs- Skills Required
Entry-Level Cybersecurity Jobs- Skills Required

Breaking into the cybersecurity field without experience involves a strategic approach, focusing on building foundational skills, obtaining relevant certifications, and gaining practical experience. Here’s a step-by-step guide:

Gaining a Solid IT Foundation:

  • Importance of IT Fundamentals: Understanding basic IT concepts such as networking, operating systems, and system administration is crucial, as these areas form the backbone of cybersecurity.

Recommended Courses and Certifications:

  • CompTIA A+: Provides a comprehensive understanding of basic IT tasks.
  • Network+: Focuses on networking concepts, an essential skill for cybersecurity roles.

Cybersecurity-Specific Certifications:

  • CompTIA Security+: A foundational certification that covers essential cybersecurity concepts and practices.
  • Certified Ethical Hacker (CEH): Focuses on identifying and addressing security vulnerabilities.
  • Benefits of Certifications: These certifications demonstrate your commitment to the field and assure employers of your skills, often compensating for the lack of professional experience.

Practical Experience:

Importance of Hands-On Learning: Gaining practical experience is critical in cybersecurity, as it allows you to apply theoretical knowledge in real-world scenarios.

Ways to Gain Experience:

  • Internships: Seek opportunities in IT or cybersecurity roles to gain on-the-job experience.
  • Home Labs: Set up a home lab to practice skills such as network setup, penetration testing, and system administration.
  • Volunteer Projects: Offer to help non-profits or small businesses with their cybersecurity needs, providing real-world experience while contributing to the community.

MORE READ: Career in HR Vs Cybersecurity: A Comprehensive Analysis

Leveraging Online Resources and Communities

Guide to Entry Level Cybersecurity Jobs with No Experience
Guide to Entry Level Cybersecurity Jobs with No Experience

Maximizing online resources and engaging with communities can significantly enhance your cybersecurity knowledge and network. Here’s how to leverage these tools effectively:

Free Online Courses and Bootcamps: Recommendations for Platforms:

  • ExcelMindCyber: Offers a comprehensive 90-day Cybersecurity Training Program led by Tolulope Michael, which is designed to transition you into a high-earning cybersecurity role within three months.
  • Cybrary: Provides free and paid courses covering various cybersecurity topics.

Benefits of Bootcamps and Online Courses:

  • Accelerated Learning: Programs like ExcelMindCyber’s 90-day course provide intensive, focused training that can quickly elevate your skills.
  • Career Support: Many bootcamps offer career services, including resume reviews and job placement assistance. ExcelMindCyber boasts a strong track record of student success.

Blogs, Podcasts, and YouTube Channels: List of Recommended Resources: Blogs:

  • Tolumichael.com: Features cutting-edge insights and discussions on cybersecurity trends, challenges, and solutions, helping you stay ahead in the tech and security space.
  • CSO Online: Covers a wide range of cybersecurity topics.
  • The Hacker News: Provides updates on the latest cyber threats and trends.

YouTube Channels:

  • Tolulope Michael’s YouTube Channel: Offers valuable content, empowering you for success in the world of cybersecurity and helping you land multiple cybersecurity roles.
    • Podcast: Here, he shares success stories and guides individuals in transitioning into cybersecurity, propelling them to lucrative six-figure careers.
  • John Hammond: Focuses on cybersecurity tutorials and challenges.
  • Simply Cyber: Provides practical cybersecurity tips and career advice.

Building a Strong Cybersecurity Resume

Crafting a compelling resume is crucial for landing an entry-level cybersecurity job, especially without prior experience. Here’s how to build a resume that stands out:

Highlighting Transferable Skills:

  • Importance of Soft Skills: Emphasize skills such as problem-solving, critical thinking, and communication, which are essential in cybersecurity.
  • Showcasing Relevant Skills from Other Fields: If you have experience in IT, customer service, or any technical role, highlight how these skills apply to cybersecurity. For example:
    • Problem-Solving: Demonstrated through IT troubleshooting or customer support roles.
    • Attention to Detail: Essential for identifying security vulnerabilities and anomalies.

Showcasing Certifications and Projects: How to List Certifications Effectively:

  • Include relevant certifications prominently, such as CompTIA Security+, CEH, or Network+.
  • Mention any ongoing or upcoming certifications to show continuous learning.

Highlighting Practical Projects:

  • Describe projects you’ve worked on, such as setting up a home lab, participating in Capture the Flag (CTF) competitions, or volunteer cybersecurity work.
  • Use specific examples to illustrate your skills, such as “Configured a secure network environment using Virtual Private Networks (VPNs) and firewalls.”

Tailoring Resumes for Specific Roles:

  • Customizing Resumes for Each Job Application:
  • Read the job description carefully and tailor your resume to match the required skills and qualifications.
  • Use keywords from the job listing to enhance the chances of your resume passing through Applicant Tracking Systems (ATS).

Focusing on Relevant Skills and Experiences:

Highlight experiences and skills most relevant to the role you are applying for, such as incident response for a security analyst position or coding skills for a junior penetration tester role.

SEE ALSO: Privileged User Cybersecurity Responsibilities: Everything You Need to Know

Preparing for Interviews

Entry Level Cybersecurity Jobs
Entry Level Cybersecurity Jobs

Preparing thoroughly for interviews is essential to secure an entry-level cybersecurity job. Here’s a guide to help you ace your interviews:

Common Entry-Level Interview Questions: 

  1. “Can you explain the CIA Triad and its importance in cybersecurity?”
  2. “How would you secure a network against a potential threat?”
  3. “Describe a time when you had to solve a difficult problem under pressure.”
  4. “How do you stay updated with the latest cybersecurity trends and technologies?”

How to Prepare for and Answer These Questions:

  • Review fundamental cybersecurity concepts, such as encryption, firewalls, and threat detection.
  • Practice explaining technical topics in simple terms to demonstrate your understanding.
  • Use the STAR method (Situation, Task, Action, Result) to structure your responses.
  • Highlight experiences that demonstrate your problem-solving skills, teamwork, and adaptability.

Demonstrating Practical Knowledge:

  • Discussing Hands-On Experience: Share details about any labs, projects, or competitions you’ve participated in, explaining your role and the skills you utilized.
  • Highlighting Certifications and Training: Mention relevant certifications and the skills you gained from them.
  • Discuss any ongoing training or courses you are taking to show your commitment to continuous learning.

Interview Etiquette and Follow-Up:

  • Professional Conduct During Interviews: Dress appropriately and arrive on time for in-person or virtual interviews.
  • Listen carefully, answer questions clearly, and ask insightful questions about the role and company.
  • Importance of Follow-Up Emails: Send a thank-you email within 24 hours, expressing appreciation for the opportunity and reiterating your interest in the position.
  • Highlight a key point from the interview to reinforce your qualifications and enthusiasm.

Conclusion

The cybersecurity field offers a wealth of opportunities for those without prior experience, provided they are willing to invest in building the right skills and certifications. The demand for cybersecurity professionals is high, and many entry-level roles are accessible to those without formal experience.

Positions such as Information Cybersecurity Analyst, IT Support Specialist, Junior Penetration Tester, System Administrator, and Security Auditor provide a solid foundation for a cybersecurity career.

Focus on building a solid IT foundation, obtaining relevant cybersecurity certifications, and gaining practical experience through internships, home labs, or volunteer projects. The journey to a cybersecurity career may be challenging, but the rewards are significant, including job security, competitive salaries, and the satisfaction of protecting valuable digital assets.

FAQ

How to start a career in cybersecurity with no experience?

Starting a career in cybersecurity without experience involves several strategic steps:
Build a Solid IT Foundation: Learn the basics of IT, including networking, operating systems, and system administration. Consider certifications like CompTIA A+ and Network+.
Obtain Cybersecurity Certifications: Gain relevant certifications such as CompTIA Security+, Certified Ethical Hacker (CEH), or CompTIA Cybersecurity Analyst (CySA+).
Gain Practical Experience: Set up a home lab, participate in cybersecurity competitions like Capture the Flag (CTF), or volunteer for projects.
Leverage Online Resources: Enroll in online courses and bootcamps, and utilize free resources like cybersecurity blogs, podcasts, and YouTube channels.
Network and Connect with Professionals: Join online cybersecurity communities, attend conferences, and connect with industry professionals on LinkedIn.
Tailor Your Resume and Apply for Jobs: Highlight transferable skills, certifications, and practical projects on your resume. Apply for entry-level roles that match your skills and qualifications.

What is the most entry-level cybersecurity job?

The most entry-level cybersecurity job is often considered to be the IT Support Specialist role. This position requires a basic understanding of IT systems and customer support, making it accessible to those new to the field. Key responsibilities include providing technical assistance, troubleshooting issues, and maintaining system performance.

Can you learn cybersecurity with no computer experience?

You can learn cybersecurity with no computer experience. Here’s how:

Start with Basic IT Courses: Enroll in introductory courses that cover fundamental IT concepts.
Use Online Learning Platforms: Platforms like edX, Cybrary, and Coursera offer beginner-friendly courses in cybersecurity.
Participate in Bootcamps: Cybersecurity bootcamps are designed to take beginners to job-ready professionals in a few months.
Leverage Free Resources: Use blogs, podcasts, and YouTube channels to build your knowledge.
Hands-On Practice: Set up a home lab to practice cybersecurity skills and experiment with tools.

What is the lowest salary in cybersecurity?

The lowest salary in cybersecurity typically belongs to entry-level roles such as the Source Code Auditor or Junior Forensic Analyst, with salaries starting around $49,934 and $53,950 annually, respectively. These positions require foundational IT or computer science knowledge and often involve examining software code or assisting in digital investigations.

If you’re ready to take the next step in your cybersecurity journey? You can do that with an expert beside you to guide you through without having to stress much. Schedule a one-on-one consultation with Tolulope Michael, a cybersecurity professional with over a decade of field experience. This will allow you to gain personalized insights and guidance tailored to your career goals.

Visit tolumichael.com now to book your session. This is your opportunity to embark on your cybersecurity career with confidence.

Tolulope Michael

Tolulope Michael

Tolulope Michael is a multiple six-figure career coach, internationally recognised cybersecurity specialist, author and inspirational speaker. Tolulope has dedicated about 10 years of his life to guiding aspiring cybersecurity professionals towards a fulfilling career and a life of abundance. As the founder, cybersecurity expert, and lead coach of Excelmindcyber, Tolulope teaches students and professionals how to become sought-after cybersecurity experts, earning multiple six figures and having the flexibility to work remotely in roles they prefer. He is a highly accomplished cybersecurity instructor with over 6 years of experience in the field. He is not only well-versed in the latest security techniques and technologies but also a master at imparting this knowledge to others. His passion and dedication to the field is evident in the success of his students, many of whom have gone on to secure jobs in cyber security through his program "The Ultimate Cyber Security Program".

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