You may think that your current professional background has nothing to do with cybersecurity. 

"What good would my experience in retail do for such a complex industry?" - Well, let us prove you wrong. 

At AMATAS, we have seen firsthand that with the right skillset, mindset, and foundation training, the world of cybersecurity is a viable career option, even if you don't come from a traditional IT background. 

In the following article, we'll look at: 

  • how non-traditional IT experience can benefit an organization’s cybersecurity 
  • transferable skills from previous experience 
  • different entry-level cybersecurity roles 
  • the AMATAS offer 

So here's our guide to launch your exciting journey in cybersecurity - an industry that's constantly adapting and growing. 

How your different career backgrounds can help a cybersecurity organization grow? 

Many believe that entering the world of cybersecurity requires years and years of academic and practical experience. 

But the truth is that cybersecurity is a dynamic field that requires versatile perspectives to suit different organizations' needs. 

Consider the following - CISCO 2021 Cybersecurity threat trends report found that in 86% of the organization, at least one person clicked a phishing link. 

Phishing attacks amounted to 90% of data breaches in 2021! 

Organizations have realized how vital it is to invest in their cybersecurity and find creative and professional solutions, to ensure their data security. 

Thus, this current high demand for cybersecurity professionals has created an opportunity for those with non-traditional IT backgrounds. 

Let's look at a couple of the most popular industries that make a good transition in cybersecurity. 

  • Cyberattackers' #1 target is payment systems - from phishing schemes to ransomware attacks. No organization is safe. 

That's why professionals, who deal with payment systems daily, could be an ideal fit for a role in cybersecurity. The world of banking or retail transitions naturally to cybersecurity, as these are some of the most targeted industries. Professionals working in those industries have a basic understanding of handling a ransomware attack or have received dozens of phishing emails and know how to identify them. 

Also, they could easily translate processes to employees, as they've previously "walked miles in their shoes." 

  • Cybersecurity requires exceptional attention to detail - a single letter or number amiss can make a tremendous difference. 

Who better to understand the importance of details than finance experts or marketers - who deal with numbers in an ever-evolving environment? 

Their jobs require an adaptive mindset to new trends, new markets, and customers. 

Their communication skills are also another strong capability they've developed, e.g., negotiating terms and explaining how the ROI is affected by different organizational decisions are all a part of some financial experts’ morning routines. Finally, they can strategize ahead and outline different possible scenarios - in a field where the constant today may turn into a variable the next hour. So, we've outlined the possible career backgrounds and why they could make an excellent addition to a cybersecurity team.  

Let us now explore some necessary skills to help you transition from your non-standard IT background. 

Transitioning your skills 

You may be entirely new to cybersecurity - lacking the technical background and experience. 

But that doesn't mean that you should completely dismiss your current skill set, as it could be helpful in a role in cybersecurity. 

Here are the four most popular soft skills which you could transfer from your previous roles to your new venture. 

  • People Skills 

Cybersecurity is most certainly a team effort that involves cooperation between yourself and your team members. And of course, the various organizations where you'll have to manage security awareness or respond swiftly to security breaches. That's why it's important to have good people skills. 

  • Flexibility 

Most often, you'll have to explain something that may seem complex to the employee of the organization. The ability to adapt and simplify procedures, ideas, and measures is what makes good cybersecurity professionals stand apart. Because cybersecurity isn't a "one size fits all" approach. 

  • Problem-Solving 

Cybersecurity professionals have to be able to identify specific problems before they even happen. Strategizing, thinking ahead, and creativity - are all excellent skills for cybersecurity professionals to thrive. So, if you're into solving complex puzzles and the most challenging level of Sudoku, think about taking the next level to scale up your problem-solving.  

  • Willingness to grow and develop professionally 

You may not have the necessary technical background, but as they say, "if there's a will, there's away." We have also created a list of the most common technical skills, which may be transferable from different roles to one in cybersecurity. 

  • Risk assessment 

You may not have had the experience of working with candidate systems and vulnerability scores, but risk assessment is a transferable skill. For example, insurance professionals know how to identify the risk an individual or organization may be facing - and learn how to assign preventative measures.

  • Authentication 

Cybersecurity professionals' roles may include auditing existing and creating new authentication schemes. If you can showcase an understanding of how these systems work and desire to learn how to sustain them, you're on the right track. 

  • Information systems 

Do you know how data travels within your current organization, or are you slightly familiar with the system they have installed? If you want to get into cybersecurity, knowledge of information systems can be a fantastic asset. As you'll already know how data is processed - now it'll be time to make its journey a successful and secure one. 

Have you considered what entry-level opportunities there are out there for you? What cybersecurity path would work best for you? Switching from a non-traditional IT career to an entry-level cybersecurity role is most certainly possible. Of course, this would require you to take a foundational approach to better understand the field.  

If you're interested in finding out the courses AMATAS offers to our team members; we've listed them in the next section of this article. But as a start, here are some of the most popular entry-level roles: 

  • Junior information security analyst - corrects and identifies bugs in current security systems 
  • Incident response analyst - figures out why an attack or incident happened, identifies compromised data, and suggests next action steps. 
  • Junior penetration tester - simulates hacks to test organizations’ cybersecurity. 
  • Risk analyst - performs assessments of organizations' cybersecurity and recommends improvements. 

There are plenty more opportunities, so make sure you follow us on social media to find out how you could join the AMATAS team at an entry-level position.  

The AMATAS Offer 

AT AMATAS, we strive toward creating a safer digital space for organizations without any fears of cyber threats and attacks. We work with organizations across the globe to install individual security solutions based on the best trends in the industry. 

Our team is fluent in the following technologies/ programming languages: 

  • Jira  
  • MS Azure 
  • VMWare 
  • Javascript 
  • Python 
  • Bash 
  • PHP 
  • C# 
  • Java  
  • Golang 

We are visionaries with many years of experience and have internationally recognized cybersecurity certifications. Our day-to-day work includes building new strategies and methodologies with passion, vision, and ambition. 

But our secret ingredient behind the AMATAS formula for success? 

We believe in and support the people that have created and are working on our services. AMATAS helps each team member grow professionally with individual career growth plans and consultations. 

We offer our team various certifications to scale up and reach beyond their full potential. 

Some basic certifications we offer include: 

  • Linux,  
  • MS Office 365,  
  • VMware  
  • ITIL Foundation ITIL Foundation 
  • OSCP Offensive Security Certified Professional 

For the complete list, you can read our previous article or get in touch with us to find out how we can launch your career in cybersecurity. 

Final words

Transitioning from a non-traditional IT background to cybersecurity is a definite possibility. 

Our advice to you is: 

  • research the role you’re interested in  
  • assess your experience and figure out which skills are transferable 
  • sign up for a good foundation course to get a basic understanding of the role 

Remember that cybersecurity is a dynamic and ever-evolving environment where your unique talent and knowledge could make a difference in building a more secure digital environment for all. 

If you are interested in starting your journey at AMATAS, reach out to us. 

Ralitsa Kosturska in AMATAS