As the public-at-large continues to become more subservient to advancing technology, its susceptibility to social media fraud and corporate security breaches has become burdensome. Daily lives and economic solvency are at stake. To the rescue is the near-six-figure cyber security profession, an effective cyber warfare weapon that out-smarts pathological terrorist groups, relentless criminals and even disgruntled employees.
“There are just not enough people to fill the job roles that we have, whether for a practitioner or a senior leader,” said David Lam, vice president of the Los Angeles chapter of the Information Systems Security Association (ISSA). “I’m getting calls all the time looking for people to fill jobs in this field.”
Lam, who also serves as an active member of UCLA Extension’s technology management program, says the demanding roles of information security analysts and computer network architects have reached crucial levels.
“Hacking into computers has become pervasive,” Lam said. “Companies need to have people who understand the problem and can work towards getting the company working within an information security management system.”
What key qualities must an information security analyst possess?
“One of the most important attributes is a person’s ability to relate well with people. Then, you need to have a competent ability to execute in one of the information security disciplines.”
How does one prepare for this field?
“UCLA Extension has had a very popular course for many years on the basics of information security. From there, more specialized courses are available. ISSA has been working with UCLA Extension to put together a certificate program just for information security, so we are excited to see that get off the ground.”
What is your advice to those interested in pursuing this profession?
“Join us at ISSA and learn some more. Even if you’re not currently in information security, the knowledge will be valuable. If you are in IT, it will be indispensable to making your system more secure.”
Sharon Raiford Bush is an award-winning journalist who covers topics of social interest in greater Los Angeles. Some news articles she has authored have been archived by the Smithsonian Institution in Washington, DC. Sharon also contributes to Examiner.com.