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Gamers Move to the Next Level in IT. Use YOUR Skills and Win a Six-Figure Job

Gamers Move to the Next Level in IT. Use YOUR Skills and Win a Six-Figure Job

Gamers and IT professionals are cut from the same cloth. Both are team players. Both are tech buffs. Both grew up “wired.” The main difference? Top IT professionals hang out in the boardroom, not the bedroom.

Many famous coders, network engineers, and developers started as gamers:

Gamers and IT professionals share similar personality traits. Both have a competitive streak. (You can’t play “Fortnite” without one). And the will to succeed. (Just ask programmer-turned-billionaire-businessman Tim Sweeney!)

There are obvious parallels between gamers and successful IT professionals like network engineers. If you game at home, apply those skills to a new job in the lucrative IT sector. You’ll never have to put down the controller!

Become an IT Professional and Use Your Gaming Skills

So you want to get a job in the gaming industry? This is a highly competitive field — there are 2.6 billion gamers worldwide, up from 100 million in 1995 — so you should develop new talents to improve your chances of success. One route into this sector is through IT, where you can hone many of the skills you’ve developed playing video games — enhanced coordination, spatial awareness, improved concentration, memory recall, problem-solving, multi-tasking, the list is endless.

With the right training from a professional, you can garner the skills you need to work in IT, as well as industry certifications that help you land your first job in this field. The IT sector is crying out for talented gamers like you. And you’re going to love it.

What you can expect when you work in IT:

  • No day is the same. (You get to work on different projects.)
  • The opportunity to transfer your gaming skills to real-world environments.
  • The chance to work with similar people to you. (Many people who work in IT are gamers!)
  • There are loads of opportunities for career progression.
  • You earn good money! (Keep reading to find out how much.)

As you know, there are lots of job roles in IT, including coders, developers, and designers. However, network engineering roles are consistently ranked as one of the most in-demand tech jobs. Network engineers are similar to gamers in various ways. Both have excellent hand-eye coordination. Both solve complex problems. Both plan strategically. (If you’ve ever played Civilization, you know what we mean.)

LEARN MORE ABOUT THE FULL STACK NETWORK ENGINEER PROGRAM NOW

Take a look at this recent job ad from video game company Ubisoft. It’s looking for a network engineer, and the company will pay big bucks to the right candidate. As a gamer, you already have many of the required skills…

  • “Understanding of computer and console game networking systems and technologies” 

As a gamer, you have this talent!

  • “Strong communication and interpersonal skills; the ability to work as a part of a team.”

And this!

  • “Self-directed, focused, and detail-oriented.”

And this!

OK, there will be stuff you might not know, such as client/server models, peer-to-peer models, and latency compensation, but you can learn all this quickly. You could become a job-ready certified network engineer in just 3 months, even if you’ve never worked in IT before. (Or never had a job before!)

How to Move From Gaming to Network Engineering

Network engineers deal with various computer network elements and, in theory, video games are similar to these components. Therefore, you can transfer many of the skills learned in gaming to IT.

When you become a network engineer, you’ll optimize networking systems and collaborate with other engineers to improve performance. You’ll also:

  • Develop code.
  • Maintain network performance.
  • Enhance network reliability.
  • Improve security.
  • Look after data systems.

“Some of your other duties in the role of computer network engineer might include network modeling and analysis. This means you will have to analyze the particular networking needs of a business and determine which software and hardware solutions will suit them the best,” says Learn.org. “You will then plan out, install, and maintain those various solutions, which might include wireless adapters, routers, or network drivers.”

Do you have what it takes?

If you like to game, becoming a network engineer could provide you with a productive, profitable career. Plus, you can still play the video games you love. Some IT professionals still “game” outside of work; others play games at work.

LEARN MORE ABOUT THE FULL STACK NETWORK ENGINEER PROGRAM NOW

Why You Should Work in Cybersecurity as a Gamer

With the right gaming skills and experience, you can become a network engineer (or another type of IT pro) in almost any niche. One of the most lucrative? Cybersecurity.

Gamers and cybersecurity network engineers have lots in common, so this shouldn’t be a difficult career to move into. Ninety-two percent of people in a recent study agree that gamers possess skills critical to cybersecurity, such as perseverance, logic, and an understanding of “adversaries”. Moreover, gamers are more likely to detect cybersecurity threats than traditional cybersecurity hires.

“[The majority] of cybersecurity professionals say the current generation entering the workforce that grew up playing video games are stronger candidates for cybersecurity roles,” says TechRepublic. “As cybersecurity pros struggle to keep up with evolving threats, one emerging pool of talent may help organizations stay safe: Video gamers.”

Working in cybersecurity can be rewarding. Like in popular video games, you detect threats, help innocent people, and fight against the “bad guy.” You also get the chance to work with governments and multinational corporations in the battle against cybercrime. Just like in Fortnite, you can save the world!

Cybersecurity is also lucrative for gamers. Average salaries range from $100-200,000 — well above the national average — and hit seven figures for the highest-paying jobs. Without a doubt, network engineering is one of the best-paid roles in cybersecurity. Your mission, should you choose to accept it? To set up, develop, and maintain computer networks — and keep everyone safe from the baddies.

Becoming a cybersecurity network engineer (or network security engineer) provides you with as much satisfaction as your favorite video game. You’ll be responsible for maintaining the company’s WAN, LAN, server architecture, firewalls, virtual networks, programs, and more. You’ll be the gatekeeper of the organization. The superhero of the company. The Lara Croft, Sonic the Hedgehog, or Master Chief. (Choose your character!)

LEARN MORE ABOUT THE CYBER PROGRAM THAT WILL HELP YOU BREAK INTO CYBERSEC NOW

You can even combine cybersecurity and gaming, and work as a cybersecurity network engineer in the gaming industry! There are loads of these jobs across the United States. (Not just Silicon Valley.) Check out these careers for video game enthusiasts:

WANTED: Network Engineer for Gamigo

Who? One of the largest gaming companies in North America

Where? Austin, TX

How much? $71-91,000 a year (estimated)

WANTED: Gameplay Network Engineer for Ubisoft

Who? Global video game company with development studios around the world

Where? San Francisco, CA

How much? $76-100,000 a year (estimated)

WANTED: Engineer for Electronic Arts (EA)

Who? World-famous video game brand, famous for “Medal of Honor,” “The Sims,” “Dragon Age,” and more

Where? Orlando, FL

How much? $100-140,000 a year (estimated)

(Information correct as of July 2020)

Ready to Become a Network Engineer?

Unfortunately, you can’t leap from a gamer to a professional network engineer without any additional training. Sure, being a gamer puts you at an advantage, but you still need the help of a professional.

Meet Andrew, a veteran, and father-of-four, who enrolled in NexGenT’s Zero to Engineer program. He learned life-long IT skills (and work-ready soft skills) from top network engineers who have worked at companies like Google, Cisco, and Amazon.

After he completed the program, Andrew landed a job at NASA as a network engineer, where he specialized in WAN, CAN, and LAN engineering and management for more than 5,000 nodes. Andrew negotiated two raises and doubled his salary to more than six figures a year, before landing a position at Insight Global, and then Riot Games, one of the world’s largest video game developers. He now earns $200,000 a year.

Perhaps you’re like Andrew. You want to become a network engineer (or another type of IT pro) but lack the resources and contacts. With the Zero to Engineer program, you get hands-on technical education, industry-recognized certifications, virtual mentorship, flexible learning, and career services all from the comfort of your home.

Final Word

Are you a gamer? Whether you want to become an IT professional in the gaming industry or another sector, you’re almost halfway there. With a little training, you could land the job of your dreams and earn a lucrative salary.

Learn About the FSNE Program To Break Into IT NOW Learn More about the Cyber Security Training Unlike Any Other

 

EXPLAINED: IT Job Security Clearances – An Expert Reveals the Secrets

EXPLAINED: IT Job Security Clearances – An Expert Reveals the Secrets

Everything you ever wanted to know about security clearance IT jobs (including sponsorship) but were too afraid to ask…

What do cops, members of the security services, and systems engineers have in common? All of these jobs often require a security clearance. So do network engineers, software architects, and even coders. 

The number of IT jobs that require clearance might surprise you. Often, it’s not the job itself, but the organization hiring you for the job. Database administrators who work for the military, for example, require clearance. Database administrators working for private companies might not. Most government agencies, who are super-paranoid about national security, require clearance before you even pull up a chair at the IT desk. 

One thing’s for sure: More IT roles require clearance than ever before. Nine percent of all job listings ask for clearance, and 50 percent of these positions are in the digital tech sector. A growing number of organizations require candidates to have clearance before applying for the role, but it’s not clear how many applicants do. 

Recently, in our Meet the Mentor webinar series, we spoke to senior cybersecurity engineer Dereck Watters, who provided us with some valuable insights into the top-secret world of security clearance. 

In this guide, you’re going to discover the following:

  • What kind of jobs require clearance.
  • The four different levels of clearance.
  • How to get your clearance sponsored. 
  • The different ways to obtain clearance.
  • How to pass a clearance.
  • Other insights from cybersecurity expert Dereck Watters. 

Let’s Clear Up Some Things About Clearance

A security clearance isn’t something you can pay for. Or study for. You need to earn it, the hard way. Think of it as a badge of honor. A medal that proves you can protect classified information. You’re a genuine “keeper of secrets.” Someone who won’t snitch, no matter what.

There’s a huge shortage of people who have the technical abilities to perform a job with clearance. But Watters tells us that, once you earn clearance, you’ll be made for life.

“You’re pretty much guaranteed a job,” he says. “Put your resume on Indeed, and a thousand people are going to call you.”

Because there’s such a small pool of job candidates with the required clearance for some jobs, employers are willing to pay big bucks.

“Once you get that established under your name, you’re pretty much guaranteed a position from the Department of Defense or the Navy or the Air Force.”

The federal government views clearance as a prerequisite for most jobs that protect national security. So many government agencies have been burned in recent years — data breaches, like those at the Office of Personnel Management, Department of Energy, and Department of Veterans Affairs have become commonplace — so now candidates need the right security credentials to preserve the country’s biggest secrets. 

It’s important to note that there isn’t just one type of security clearance, but four:

  • Confidential: For people that could cause damage to national security if sensitive information is disclosed without authorization. 
  • Secret: For people that could cause serious damage to national security if sensitive information is disclosed without authorization.
  • Top secret: For people that could cause exceptionally grave damage to national security if sensitive information is disclosed without authorization. 
  • Sensitive compartmented information: For people who could access information concerning sensitive intelligence sources, methods, or analytical processes. 

Once you’ve got clearance, you’re good for 15 years (10 years for secret clearance; five years for top-secret clearance). This means, in most instances, you won’t have to apply for clearance again for a whole decade or more.

There are a whole host of jobs that require some kind of clearance, especially in the government. Even if your job role has nothing to do with national security — “I’m just a software engineer,” you say — some agencies still require clearance, and not much you can do about it.

Some of the agencies that require clearance:

  • Central Intelligence Agency
  • Defense Intelligence Agency
  • Defense Security Service
  • Department of Defense
  • Drug Enforcement Administration
  • Federal Bureau of Investigation
  • National Security Agency
  • Naval Criminal Investigative Service
  • State Department
  • United States Agency for International Development

Recommended reading: Why now’s a great time to consider a new career in cybersecurity

How to Get Your Clearance Sponsored

Unfortunately, clearance costs money — lots of it. It costs between $3,000 and $15,000 to gain top-secret clearance; however, the feds will sometimes cover the cost for civilian government employees and military personnel. This is called “sponsorship.” The good news: Once you’ve gained clearance from the government, you can use it for any job that requires it — yes, even private companies. 

Watters tells us there are four main ways to get your clearance sponsored:

  • Military
  • College
  • Part-time employment
  • Contracts

Military

This is the easiest way. Visit your nearest military processing center, and pick a military occupation code (MOS) that requires clearance. You can apply for this occupation, and the government will sponsor your clearance. It’s that simple. Just make sure you’re fit and healthy, and you have the correct scores for the role.

“You don’t have to do active military duty,” says Watters. “You could do the reserves if you don’t have much time. Or even the National Guard.”

College

Many colleges have government-sponsored programs that will pay for studies and security clearance. Sure, you’ll have to work for the government for a couple of years when you graduate (or pay a fee), but this can be a quick way to gain clearance if you don’t have the money. 

“Essentially, if you’re going for a STEM tech degree either in cybersecurity, system engineering, or electrical engineering, they will pay for your school, and they sponsor you for your clearance,” says Watters. “This is a quick way to get into a government position without actually putting on the uniform.”

Word of warning: There are specific time slots for when you can apply for these programs, so plan ahead. 

Part-time employment

There are jobs out there that will sponsor your clearance, but they won’t always be in IT. You could apply for a security job or a similar role and get sponsorship. Just look on Monster. Or USAJobs

“You could do this part-time,” adds Watters. “This gives you flexibility, and you get your clearance.” 

Contracts

Watters recommends that you look at how contracts are written for government contractors:

“If the government’s looking for a network engineer, some of the requirements are pretty weird. They will probably want you to have a CCNA, but they may also ask for a Microsoft server cert.”

It seems like a catch-all, but once you get to the interview stage, it’s a different story:  

“If you can hit some of those checkboxes — not all, but some of them — they might really like you and start the paperwork and clearance process. They will put the contract on hold until you are through clearance. The people interviewing you aren’t actually the people who write the contract.”

Recommended reading: From IT administrator to network engineer, check out our interview with Chris Mickinnis here.

How to Pass Clearance

Now comes the scary part. You might think there are skeletons in your closet, but your past isn’t always a huge deal. 

“We all have stuff in our past that we’re probably not too proud of but organizations are just looking for the things that you’re trying to keep secret from them,” says Watters. “Listen, most people think that because they smoked when they were 19, they are going to be disqualified. Investigators are not worried about anything like that. What they’re really concerned with is if you are a person that can be trusted with classified documents.”

The same goes for debt:

“They’re not looking for 800 credit scores. What they’re looking for is a person that’s trustworthy.”

A $50,000 debt in Guatemala that you didn’t disclose in your application? Potential red flag. A $4,000 debt for a TV from Best Buy? No problem.

“It’s hard to get people through the security clearance process because you need patience, and you have to have the honesty and integrity to put everything on paper. They are going to cycle through your life.”

How Long Does It Take?

How long is a piece of string? Clearance for government jobs can take anywhere from 3-6 months (and 6-18 months for top-secret clearance), and this process starts from the moment you turn in your Standard Form 86 — the document the government uses to “cycle through your life.” 

Once you’ve submitted Form 86, human resources will submit your details to the State Department’s Office of Personnel Security and Suitability, and this is where everything springs into action. Things will move quickly, at first. 

  • Someone will carry out a National Agency Check (NAC). It’s like a criminal record and credit check rolled into one, with searches covering your residence, employment, and education locations over the last 7 years. 
  • Someone will scan your fingerprints.
  • Someone will search the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s investigative index.

Then, you won’t hear anything for weeks. Maybe months. Eventually, a case manager will be assigned to your case, and you’ll be invited to an interview. This can be tough. The investigator will verify all the information you provided in your Form 86. Be prepared to answer questions, lots of questions. 

Where did you work? Where did you live? Where did you go to school? 

What do your parents do for work? Where did your parents live? Where did your parents go to school?

Investigators can check this information with law enforcement agencies, employers, and even school principals. No stone unturned.

It’s an exhausting process. 

“Look, if you can explain your background, then they are there OK with it,” says Watters. “As long as you can articulate why you have that much money, or why your wife is from there or husband from there, it’s fine.” 

After your interview, the investigator will weigh your results against security clearance guidelines. You’ll be notified of your results in the mail.

Now you play the waiting game.

Ask a Security Expert

In our Meet the Mentor webinar with Derick Watters, our students had some security clearance questions of their own…

How does a veteran get inside info about Department of Defense contracts?

“The biggest one is definitely word of mouth. If you see anyone on LinkedIn, just talk to them. Ask about open positions. Ask about clearance. Ask about sponsorship.”

What happens at the end of federal contracts?

“When the contract ends, they have to let you know. They have to discuss it with you up-front during the interview. Of course, you have to look for another position if the contract ends, but they need people with clearance so bad they will often keep you.”

What’s the most difficult thing about the clearance process?

“I have to get checked every 5 years. You know, sit down with somebody to explain why I bought a new house or car. I have to put my wife’s name down so she can get checked. Tell them about my family members. You have to get used to giving up a little bit of your privacy.”

Want to become a cybersecurity specialist in as little as 400 hours? Our technical skills, foundational concepts, and hands-on labs will land you that entry-level cybersecurity role you’ve dreamed about. Apply now

Income Sharing Agreements Re-affirm “Greed is Good” – Here’s Why

Income Sharing Agreements Re-affirm “Greed is Good” – Here’s Why

Famous among Freakonomics fans, Stephen Dubner once argued against life insurance for a simple reason- you’re betting dollars that you’ll die sooner, whereas the insurance companies win if you live a longer life. In effect, most of us have thrown down odds against our own survival.

Unfortunately, the Student Loan Industrial Complex is now betting against us in much the same way. While not as morbidly positioned against our own existence, it is certainly not aligned with our progression and development as a civilization of higher learning. Let’s look to see where their priorities may actually lie.

Here are some alarming facts:

$31,172– average student loan debt in US per person

$393– average monthly student loan payment

$1.52 Trillion– current US student loan debt

Trillions of dollars are regularly assured as earlier payment through debt restructuring and faux-refinancing schemes that never actually resolve anyone’s goal of shedding debt. Never before has the next generation in America (and indeed the world) been so burdened and without a clear plan towards resolution.

It’s important to note that a full 10% of student loan debt in the US is MORE THAN 90 DAYS PAST DUE. It’s become a cross to bear  (thanks to a fiat of deep-pocketed lobbyists representing student loan companies) that can’t even be cast aside by a drastic measure such as bankruptcy. Therefore, student loan debt has reached a peak of unserviceable proportions. 

While many think that a student loan allows the flexibility that the overextended higher education market portrays it to have, it is anything but flexible. The reality is that missing student loan payments can hold you back financially- just like missing credit card or car payments will. A student loan is considered delinquent DAY 1 after you miss a payment; if the delinquency lasts longer, the loan servicer will report it to the three major national credit bureaus, which will impact your credit score- potentially for years to come.

A Solution?

In comes the 21st century to a 19th-century problem- how and where do we properly incentivize success rather than enrollment

What you might find both interesting and adjacent to “What the heck”, is Income Sharing Agreements were first proposed by Milton Friedman in 1955. One of the great minds of 20th century economics firmly believed that educational institutions should make an “equity investment” in “shares” of their earnings prospects.

Basically- YOU, as a student, are an investment in your future ability to earn (LOTS of) money!

And WE are, quite literally, banking on the singular goal of making sure you land a job that earns YOU (lots of) money

Incorporating ISA’s seems like a simple way to tie organizations like NexGenT to your progress as a student, right? Selfishly, we’re rewarded with higher completion rates and even more efficient placement rates. This allows us to better serve YOU (our students) and potential employers

***FULL DISCLOSURE- WE’RE IN THIS FOR YOU TO MAKE MONEY TOO!

So let’s break this down.

What exactly is an ISA?

An Income Sharing Agreement is a way for us to ensure the greatest success to you, while ensuring we’re able to collect tuition based only on our ability to properly educate AND help with job placement.

  • So you come out of the Full Stack Network Engineering program making, say,  $75,000 (pretty average starting point for a network engineer)
  • You don’t pay a dime for tuition through the entire 6 month program– classes, live instruction, 1 on 1 mentoring, certification, project experience, and job placement
  • Once you start that job making $75,000, we take 10% of what you’re making monthly
    • ***Spoiler alert- we know you can afford it, because it’s never more than 10% of what you make
  • From there, you simply pay that percentage monthly until you reach the payment cap.

There you have it- you’ll never pay more than you can afford and we’re entwined with you for at least the next couple years to make sure you’re the most valuable Network Engineer around.

Not only is this a far more efficient method than assigning an arbitrary number to the assumed future value of your earnings (see FedLoan, SallieMae, or NelNet), this is a way to indelibly tie our incentives with your success. This is how NexGenT makes career outcomes more efficient. It isn’t about just finding you a job, but running the scoreboard up! We strive to help find you a job that is a true fit. As we say, the difference between a job and a career is trajectory. We’re focused on the latter.

Come join the NexGenT family and get into Network Engineering faster than you ever thought possible– all for $0 BEFORE YOU START MAKING MONEY.

Let’s get to work and get you into a Full Stack Engineering Role in a few months

APPLY HERE!

Features of the New Cisco CCNA 200-301

Features of the New Cisco CCNA 200-301

A closer look at the differences between the old and new CCNA plus CCNA 200-301 specifics

As we all know, several changes are coming to the CCNA as of February 24, 2020. Although CCNA certification has been standard for many years, the exams keep changing to keep up with industry needs and trends. This infographic from Cisco explains the changes that have taken place and how they can affect you. CCENT and CCNA are being consolidated into one single certification. 

You have to now know Cisco’s latest tools for building and managing networks. Those who are working for their ICND1 and ICND2 exams should try hard to complete them before February 24, as doing so is only to their advantage. We will discuss the new Cisco CCNA exam in this article and compare it to the old one. We will also talk about why it’s best to get your CCNA certification right away before the changes take place. 

Sharing Similar Topics: Someone who has only completed ICND1 will still benefit as several topics between ICND1 and the CCNA 200-301 will be identical. Almost 80% of the exam covers the topics of the previous generation, which means your prior studying won’t go to waste. We’ll discuss the similarities in detail in a later section.

You’ll Get The Same Certification: If you have any current CCNA certificates  (CCNA Routing and Switching, CCNA Industrial, etc.),  then you will automatically be receiving the new CCNA certificate.

Avoid Unnecessary Stress: It can be stressful to see topics you spent a lot of time learning are no longer relevant. Don’t stress. Just because something is no longer included in the new exam, doesn’t mean it isn’t applicable to the real world. Think of it as extra real-world knowledge!

CCNA Is Valid For Three Years: Exam Versions are rarely taken into consideration by hiring managers.  If you take your certification now, you’ll not have to do so for another three years. 

Similarities Between The Old CCNA And The New CCNA 

Core CCNA topics have traditionally included knowing OSI and its first four layers. The Cisco CCNA 200-301 is also no different:

  1. Physical Layer of OSI
  2. Data Link Layer
  3. Network Layer
  4. Transport Layer

Networks 15 years ago were assembled in a similar way to modern ones. Understanding cabling types, uses, Ethernet operation, TCP, UDP, and IP routing is still essential. The new CCNA exam will be testing you on these exact topics. The other things which have changed are those that become different with almost every revision of the test. These are higher layer concepts and networking protocols.

How Are The Old CCNA And The New CCNA Exams Different? 

The CCNA 200-125 and the new CCNA 200-301 exam differ in importance given to different modules as well as in some other areas.  

Weightage Differences

CCNA 200-125CCNA 200-301
WAN Technologies (10%)
Infrastructure Service (10%)
Infrastructure Security (11%)
Infrastructure Management (10%) 
Network Fundamentals (15%)
LAN Switching Technologies (21%)
Routing Technologies (23%)
Network Fundamentals (20%) 
IP Services (10%)
Security Fundamentals (15%)
Network Access (20%)
IP Connectivity  (25%)
Automation & Programmability (10%)

Changes in Syllabus: Apart from the shift in weightage of specific modules, some topics have been scrapped for the new CCNA 200-301 exam. These following portions have been removed from the curriculum – 

  1. LAN Switching: Frame, VTP, Switch stack
  2. Routing: EIGRP, RIPv2, OSPFv3, multi-area OSPF
  3. WAN: PPP, MLPPP, PPPoE, GRE, BGP, WAN access 

Pricing Of The Exams: The pricing of the exam for CCNA 200-301 is $300, slightly less in comparison to the previous exam.

The current standing cost for ICND1 and ICND2 are $165 per exam (totaling $330 if you pass on your first attempts.)

Less To Study: CCNA 200-301 is estimated to be 25% smaller than the old CCNA 200-125 exam. 

Interested in kickstarting your career in the IT field? Get hands-on training in just 6 months. Learn How

Features Of The CCNA 200-125 Examination

The CCNA 200-125 consists of two 90-minute exams, ICND 1 & ICND 2. These are meant to be scheduled at separate times. The CCNA 200-125 covers the following topics:

  • LAN Switching Technologies 
  • IPv4 and IPv6 routing technologies
  • WAN Technologies
  • Infrastructure Service
  • Infrastructure Security
  • Infrastructure Management 
  • Network Fundamentals

Features Of The CCNA 300-201 Exam

The new CCNA will be a single exam and will be 120 minutes long. It will start from February 24, 2020, and is more comprehensive. The new CCNA gives a base using which you can scale up with next-level certifications. It covers the following topics:

  • IP Connectivity: IP routing, OSPFv2
  • IP Services: NTP, DCHP, SNMP, QoS
  • Security Fundamentals: VPNs, wireless security, port security
  • Network Access: VLANs and trunking, EtherChannel
  • Automation and Programmability: REST APIs, Puppet, Chef, JSON, SDN, etc.
  • Network Fundamentals: Including routers, switches, cabling, TCP and UDP, IPv4 and IPv6

Related: FAQ about the new and old CCNA

Thank you for taking the time to read this post. We hope it was helpful in guiding you through your studies this month. We invite any questions or comments about this blog post and welcome you to visit our site www.nexgent.com

Why NOW Is The Time To Consider A Career Move In The Field Of Cyber Security

Why NOW Is The Time To Consider A Career Move In The Field Of Cyber Security

Cyber adversaries are regularly coming up with sophisticated tools and technologies and innovating at a faster pace than what enterprises today can cope with. Let’s see why it’s high time and how to go about getting a job in cybersecurity. How much money can you make? In this article, you’ll explore what the critical Cyber Security certifications are and Cyber Security courses to get rapid career growth.

The recent surge of cyberattacks has throttled the digital world, by which organizations have not only lost their valuable information assets but also made financial and reputational losses. For this reason, cyber security is paramount in every organization’s management decision-making today. Ever-increasing cyber security breaches, resource crunch, and a shortage of talented information security professionals have left the management in limbo as they continue to struggle to find the right mix of people. It is not surprising to note that organizations lose over $8.19 million to data breaches on average. This is induced by a remarked deficit of network security professionals in comparison to the ever-rising population of cyber adversaries. 

Some Recent Breaches That Will Leave You Thinking

  • Data breach at Yahoo: Considered as one of the biggest data thefts of the decade, the Yahoo data breach of 2013 led to the compromising of 3 billion user accounts.
  • Data breach at Marriott International: Yet another data breach that will leave you astounded is the one that took place at Marriott International in 2018. This hacking attack stole the confidential data of over 500 million customers of the hotel chain.
  • WannaCry attacks: The ransomware WannaCry has been able to collect over $100,000 from organizations and people across the globe. 

If these statistics aren’t enough, an attacker is sitting in some corner of the world, launching the next major cyberattack, and you need to stop these cyber security breaches with your skills and efforts!

How In Demand Is The Field Of Cyber Security?

Considering the present scenario where job opportunities are lying ungrabbed in the field of cyber security, you can well imagine its absorption capacity! Research shows that the unfilled job positions in cyber security are to go up to 3.5 million in the coming decade as compared to 1.4 million in 2014. Here’s how to decide whether this dynamic field is the one for you:

  • A vibrant and appealing job opportunity: Working in the field of network security ensures freedom from monotony as it’s filled with variety. No case you handle is ever going to be a replica of another. The field is dynamic, and you are sure to love the mind games that await you. 
  • Financial Stability: The best part about a career in cyber security is the money that comes with it, and there is practically no limitation on it if you’re the master of your trade. The average pay is 50% higher than any private-sector job.
  • Thrill & uncertainty: Going for work will seem like going on a treasure hunt every day. It’s an adventurous experience for all, no matter which sector you specialize in.
  • Testing your skills every other day: Since a career in cyber security demands knowledge on different skill-sets, your experience of years in various fields comes handy now, and you can adequately utilize all your specialized skills. 

Related: Learn about the fundamental skills that will help you break into Cyber Security.

The Number Of Open Job Vacancies And The Expected Growth Of The Field

It is a known fact that the industry crisis in the field of cyber security is immense. The expected underemployment in the field is likely to reach 3.5 million by 2021. Therefore, it’s safe to say the platform remains open for cyber enthusiasts to perform, excel, and prosper. The industry has zero rates of unemployment and promises to be a field with endless opportunities and measureless growth.


For instance,

  • Two million openings expected in the Asia-Pacific region by 2021, and about 400,000 will be in Europe.
  • Currently, there are 314,000 unfilled cyber security positions in the USA. The U.S. had over 26,000 openings for cyber security analysts at the end of 2018. 

Why Is Security Becoming More Important As Technology Advances?

While all marvel at the quick transition of activities from offline to online that has happened in almost every walk of life. There is a significant threat that comes along with this technological advancement. All information is at the tip of your fingers – from your insurance policy number to your credit card details! Imagine what will happen if a malicious third party accesses these details? It is precisely why cyber and network security has become more critical in recent times.  

How Much Money Can I Make In Cyber Security?

Any role in the field of cyber security promises to pay extremely well as compared to any other private-sector job. Not only does this job pay well, but it also ensures that you like your work and draw some positive learning experience out of it that helps you in the long run. That being said, you can easily expect a 6 figure job as you work your way up through the industry.

The Verdict

Thus, a career in cyber security that is established with established cyber security certifications, hands-on training, and cyber security courses is one of the most secure career options now. It is expected to remain true for at least another decade. Especially the field of Artificial Intelligence-Machine Learning (AI ML) in cyber security, the combination of Data Science & AI-ML in enhancing SIEM tools & solutions, etc., is yet to be fully explored, and most job opportunities lie unabsorbed in the area. Getting a job in cyber security always offers lucrative salaries with new and diverse career responsibilities. 

To learn more about NexGenT’s Cyber Security program and what fundamental skills we teach to help you land your first job in cyber, click here. Thank you for reading and leave us a comment below with your thoughts on diving into this line of work.

Online Cybersecurity Training [Your NEED TO KNOW Fundamentals]

Online Cybersecurity Training [Your NEED TO KNOW Fundamentals]

Understanding fundamentals is a key part of becoming a skilled Cybersecurity engineer. Our program will teach you how to think like a hacker and help defend against attacks with practical real-world skills you’ll need for the job. In this blog, we’ll give you an overview of each module so you can see the key points you’ll be learning to build a strong foundation.

What Are The Key, Job-Ready Cybersecurity Skills We Teach At NexGenT?

  • Identify & Analyze Threats: In the first module of the program, we will do an introduction to a high-level overview of the cybersecurity ecosystem. We will understand the threat actors and the different types of attacks you see in this domain. We will also take a look into the various toolkits and how they fit into various security frameworks.
  • Cryptography: This module will cover the fundamentals of cryptography along with practical use cases in today’s world. It is an important aspect of security and forms the basis to many protocols that keep us safe. This module will help you understand what happens behind the scenes with these algorithms and how they are useful.
  • Network Security: Network security is the basis of Cybersecurity operations. In this module we will look at the common security implementations in place and what the common weaknesses are. We will learn about low hanging fruit, which are typically overlooked, and provide a great way to raise threat awareness.
  • Secure Protocols: This module is meant to help understand basic protocols and best practices needed to create a security-focused organization. The best offense is a defense. We will learn about the different tactics needed to raise the bar.
  • Symptoms of Compromise: By recognizing the symptoms of an attack, analysts can help stop them much sooner. Here we will cover what to expect in different scenarios so that you can diagnose the problem in an efficient manner. This analysis is key to understanding what went wrong and how to prevent it from happening again in the future.
  • Cyber toolkits: A successful analyst has a wide arsenal of tools and knows how to effectively use them. In this module, we will teach you which tools are available and how to apply them for all the various security solutions and strategies.
  • Testing the Infrastructure: In this module, we will take a look at all the practical applications of attacking your own infrastructure to help defend it. We will teach you how to identify your organization’s own weaknesses such that you can help mitigate weaknesses and help define what changes need to be made.
  • And finally, Incident Response is a crucial approach on what to do in the event of a security breach. An organization needs the security team to have a playbook ready in times of crisis and know how to react to certain events. We will take a look at planning what is needed to be done.

To find out more about our Cyber Security program, click here.