If you have ever been the victim of identity theft, you know why cybersecurity is so important. Even if you have not had this event happen, you may have had personal information stolen in a company data breach. Due to the massive increase in hacks and hacking attempts, cybersecurity has become an unavoidable topic of discussion in the past several years.
A cybersecurity degree can equip students with the skills they need to counteract hacker’s attempts and keep personal and corporate information safe. The need for cybersecurity professionals to keep online information safe is growing. With increasing awareness and concern over the growing cyber threats facing organizations, governments and individuals, you may want to consider a degree in cybersecurity. Cybersecurity professionals looking to further their education and stay current on industry happenings and technology can also consider earning a cybersecurity certificate.
What Is Cybersecurity?
Cybersecurity is the process of preparing, protecting or recovering computer systems from any type of cyberattack. These cyberattacks generally go after personal information and sensitive data that can be profitable. This might include working with computer systems, networks, devices or programs.
As the world becomes more increasingly reliant on technology, cyberattacks are becoming more commonplace. Many companies from Equifax to Wells Fargo have been victims of cybercrime.1 These major companies being affected means that cybersecurity degree graduates are in high demand. Students in a cybersecurity degree program are trained to keep information and data secure with new programs and methodologies.
What Is Cybercrime?
Cybercrime is mostly related to information theft. These crimes includes confidential information being exposed online and then stolen. The main purpose of the cybercrime is to compromise data or to steal information and sell it on the dark web for financial gain.
However, simple identity theft is not the only rising type of cybercrime. Technical infrastructure and networks at corporations are also targets for cybercriminals. Vulnerabilities in a network can also cause serious issues when hackers are stealing personal data. Cloud services are especially vulnerable to identity theft cybercrime.
Cybersecurity experts know that social engineering is the most common element of a cyberattack since it’s based on getting information to use in an attack. The hackers who employ social engineering use phishing, email-based attacks, to deploy malware such as ransomware or spyware to gain entry to their target’s network. They often go after third-party vendors who process data and may have fewer cybersecurity protocols.
Data breaches that involve identity theft and financial information can be expensive and detrimental to victims. In addition, protected health information, personally identifiable information, trade secrets and intellectual property are targets of cyberattacks.
Why Is There a Need for Cybersecurity?
When you earn a cybersecurity degree, you will learn about the elements that make cybercrime and cyberattacks possible. Some of these include the distributed nature of the internet. Since the internet is made up of numerous computers and networks connected to each other, cybersecurity needs to be stronger than ever. Hackers can spring their attacks on targets anywhere around the world in the hope of gaining extremely lucrative information.
Job Demand for Cybersecurity Professionals
Cybersecurity is important for many reasons. There is a lot of damage that is done after a cyberattack. Much of this damage includes economic costs. Additionally, cybercrime can lead to reputation problems. When word gets out that a company has been hacked and that databases have been breached, customers may lose trust and move their business to a competitor.
As of September 2021, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics Occupational Outlook Handbook estimates job growth for STEM occupations to increase by about 10.5% from 2020 to 2030, faster than average, accounting for an estimated increase of 1,074,500 jobs in the field.2
Businesses want to employ cybersecurity experts because of the regulatory costs. If a data breach results in legal issues, you may face fines or regulatory requirements. Cybersecurity ensures that personal data is safe, which is necessary where data is so easily accessible. There are already some laws in place to ensure cybersecurity is enforced at these various institutions.
Businesses and personal individuals rely on computer systems and mobile devices every day to complete work and simple day-to-day tasks. In addition, most of the apps or software we use on mobile devices or at work use the cloud to store information.
Why Earn a Cybersecurity Degree?
Cybersecurity degree graduates have a wide range of options available for jobs. Many students find jobs with the government, while others work for large or small companies. In addition, cybersecurity experts can work across all business sectors and companies of all sizes. Therefore, you could move across different sectors or specialize with ease.
Also, you can a major impact in the lives of others. Many people are affected by stolen data and could benefit from having more cybersecurity professionals in the work force. Improving network security at these companies and the government will benefit everyone in the long run.
If you are interested in pursuing a role as a cybersecurity expert, join us for the Bachelor of Science in Cybersecurity degree program at Grand Canyon University’s College of Science, Engineering and Technology. You will gain knowledge to be able to help individuals and companies keep their information and data secure against cyberattacks.
1Bankrate.com, What the Wells Fargo Scandal Can Teach You About the Equifax Hack, in December 2021
2 COVID-19 has adversely affected the global economy and data from 2020 may be atypical compared to prior years. The pandemic may impact the predicted future workforce outcomes indicated by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics as well. Accordingly, data shown is based on 2020, which can be found here: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Outlook Handbook, Employment in STEM Occupations
The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author’s and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of Grand Canyon University. Any sources cited were accurate as of the publish date.