Chances are you’ve seen plenty of TV shows and movies about bad guys who try to cheat the system, and the good guys who foil their efforts. It’s a common storyline for everything from old westerns set in the dusty back country to action-packed police shows on the streets of modern cities.
But today the epic struggle of good versus evil is moving to the digital world. The need for knowledgeable professionals to keep information secure has never been greater. If you’d like to be at the forefront of the cyber battlefield, you know you’ll need to arm yourself with the proper knowledge and skills.
The cyber security courses you’ll take on your way to earning a degree will help equip you to take down cybercriminals and protect sensitive data. But what are these courses and why are they important?
We enlisted Terry Schorn, Rasmussen College School of Technology department chair to offer his insights about some of the intriguing cyber security courses you can expect.
6 important cyber security courses
We compiled the descriptions below with insight from Schorn. This will give you a sneak peek into cyber security courses offering crucial knowledge relevant in today’s digital world. Learn more about the curriculum and the skills you’ll gain from each course.
1. Advanced Networking
We live in a world where people are connected by an ever-increasing range of devices. From desktops and laptops to smartphones and tablets, the devices that people and businesses rely on are continually increasing. Keeping these Internet of Things (IoT) devices secure is a constant challenge. This course provides maintenance training for security of network and personal devices.
2. Auditing Security Controls
Board members and senior management need assurance that can help them fulfill their duties to the organization and its stakeholders. This course covers the principles, the approaches and the methodology in auditing information systems to provide assurance the processes and procedures are in compliance with pertinent laws and regulatory provisions especially in the context of cyber security.
3. Cisco Network Routing and Switching
The threat for network hacking is real, as evidenced by the constant stream of news stories about data breaches at companies that are household names. The threat includes everything from loss of data to ransomware. This course will provide you with basic training for typical network administration functions involving routers and switches.
4. Malware Reverse Engineering
The ability to understand malware of unknown origin or malware for which source code is unavailable is a critical skill within the cyber operations field. Use cases include malware analysis and auditing of closed source software. This course provides students with tools and methodology to deduce the design of malware, to determine how something works, discover data used by malware, and to aid in the analysis of malware via disassembly and/or de-compilation.
5. Computer Forensics
Here’s where you can assume the role of a digital detective. Computer forensics is the practice of investigating acts that cross the line of legality. This course will help you gain knowledge about collecting and analyzing data related to cybercrimes. You’ll receive advanced training in security forensic tools that senior security analysts would use on the job.
6. Ethical Hacking and Pen Testing
The term “ethical hacking” may at first seem like an oxymoron. But it’s really an important part of the job. You must think like a hacker to outwit one. The job of an information security analyst requires you to understand the techniques and tools that hackers use and then stay a few steps ahead of them. It’s not static, of course, but rather an ever-moving target. This course offers advanced training in pen testing, security forensics and vulnerability scanning commonly used in senior security analyst functions.
That’s only the beginning
The six cyber security courses listed above are just the beginning of the cutting-edge and in-depth curriculum included in the curriculum at Rasmussen College. Overall, there are 18 core courses included, each one designed to give you the know-how you’ll need to protect clients from cyber security threats.
Why earn an cyber security degree?
If you’re still on the fence about whether it’s worth your time to acquire a Cyber Security degree, there is important information you’ll want to know. First and foremost, you’ll be happy to hear that jobs for information security analysts are projected to grow at the much-faster-than-average rate of 18 percent through 2024, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS).
This optimistic outlook is certainly exciting. But you still need to be qualified in order to land one of these positions. We used real-time job analysis software to examine more than 77,000 information security job postings from the past year.1 The data revealed that 87 percent of employers are looking for candidates with at least a bachelor’s degree.
Earning a Cyber Security degree can help you become one of the coveted professionals who employers are desperately seeking. The current shortage of candidates equates to exciting earning potential for those who qualify. The BLS reports that information security analysts earned a median annual salary of $90,120 in 2015.2 This was more than twice the national average for all occupations, making it an appealing career choice.
What jobs will these courses prepare you for?
Our analysis of cyber security job postings helped us identify the top job titles in the field. Here is a taste of the types of jobs you could land:
- Security engineer
- Information security analyst
- Security architect
- Information security auditor
- Network security engineer
Join the fight against cybercrime
Would you like to be on the frontline of fighting cyber security threats? Now you know that in order to join the fight, you must first undergo the proper training.
After reviewing some of the core cyber security courses offered by Rasmussen College, there is no time like the present to find out more. Visit the Cyber Security program page to learn more and request more information.
1Burning-Glass.com (analysis of 77,612 cyber security job postings, December 1, 2015 – November 30, 2016).
2Salary data represents national, averaged earnings for the occupations listed and includes workers at all levels of education and experience. This data does not represent starting salaries, and employment conditions in your area may vary.