Six Skills You Need To Succeed as a Cyber Security Professional

Charlotte Miller

Updated on:

Since the dawn of the global pandemic, every business has sped up its digital transformation journey. Most financial transactions have moved online, which has led to an increase in the security measures for these platforms and businesses. Cyber security professionals are being hired in larger numbers than ever before, which means there are several new opportunities in this field. If you are looking to switch careers or explore the world of cyber security, this is the best time to enter this domain.

Everyone focuses on the analytical and technical skills that a cyber security professional needs. However, what you require is a mix of technical, logical and communication skills besides various soft skills. 

Let’s look at the top skills you need apart from a cyber security course certification.

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Technical Skills Needed:

  • A strong foundation of technical knowledge:
    Technical skills make up a small part of the entire skillset that a cyber security professional needs. Technical skills can be divided into two categories. First, you need practical technical skills and hands-on experience, which includes carrying out and completing tasks in a real working environment. This ranges from network configuration abilities to penetration testing conducted on a system to firewall installation. The role-based skills required vary greatly and are growing as technology and threats continue to evolve.
    The second type is conceptual or theoretical knowledge. This type of information supports technicians and professionals in their workings, including information like the port numbers of protocols, subnetting or an OSI model’s layers. This knowledge by itself won’t be very useful, but when combined with your technical skills, makes you a leading contender to become a cybersecurity professional.

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  • Logical reasoning skills and troubleshooting:
    Troubleshooting skills are hard to learn and develop. Detecting a problem and solving it using troubleshooting skills is an invaluable skill that employers are always looking for. You also must have the ability to reason logically and recognise patterns to identify a problem area, troubleshoot and identify the problem, and deploy the right solution. To develop your troubleshooting skills, you need hands-on work experience. This is also true for your logical reasoning skills.

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  • Research skills and the desire to keep learning:
    Cyber security is a constantly evolving field and technology gets outdated very fast. To keep up with industry trends and expand your knowledge base, you must constantly keep learning and exploring new things. Strong research skills and the ability to keep learning new and relevant information is fundamental to the role of a successful cyber security professional. To attain these skills, develop the habit of reading up every day. Learn about all the new technology that you see around you and build your natural curiosity.

Non-Technical Skills Needed:

    1. Independent worker and self-starter:
      Entry and intermediate-level cyber security workers often work alone. They don’t attend many meetings or have large teams. So when you’re working alone, your performance is measured against the problems you identify and solve independently. It’s an individual effort, so it is important to be a self-starter. Your supervisors have a different set of responsibilities, so they would prefer not to have to guide you through every small step. So when you’re developing your research skills, make sure you also learn how to work alone, identify problems and patterns, and resolve them without someone guiding you to it. That way, you become a more suitable candidate for the job as compared to someone who only has technical skills.


  • Verbal skills and customer service:
    When you join an organisation and undertake any work, you no longer do it for yourself. You represent your employer when you are dealing with any of their clients or customers. At some point in time, you will find yourself interacting with either of them, which could be a vendor, boss, manager or customer. At this point, you will need excellent communication skills and a customer-serving attitude, especially when it comes to non-technical conversation. Your actions will have repercussions for the company, which will then have repercussions for you. Good skills will mean you are an asset to your company while building interpersonal relationships.


  • Documentation and writing skills:
    In the cyber security field, you will need to document a lot of what you work on. You will be working independently most of the time, so this will tell your co-workers what you have been up to. It also helps you communicate with customers and clients, and makes up a part of your communication skills. 

On average, security projects deal with timelines that extend beyond weeks or even months. There is a high level of planning and development that goes into each project. As an expert in the field, you will have to develop a planning strategy on how to implement and integrate security measures within the existing infrastructure and create any additional programs to go along with it. If you have these non-technical skills, enroll in a cyber security course like CISSP certification, CEH V11, CISM certification, CompTIA cyber security analyst and more today and brush up on your technical skills too.