Columns, or pillars, have been an architectural staple since as early as 2600 B.C. Every significant civilization of the Iron Age (1300 B.C. to 100 B.C.) used pillars in their architecture. Even to this day, in many instances, those pillars of the Iron Age have proven to withstand the test of time.
Site where the Temple of Artemis formerly stood in Ephesus.
Anyone who has traveled to the Near East and Mediterranean regions of the world has marveled at the staying power of ancient pillars. The ancient streets of Ephesus in modern Turkey are still lined with its original pillars. These streets lead to the ancient Library of Celsus, the façade of which is still held intact by sturdy pillars. Not too far from Ephesus stands a single pillar still marking the spot of the Temple of Artemis, a wonder of the ancient world which was destroyed more than 2,400 years ago.
It goes without saying that pillars are extremely important to the structural stability and longevity of a building. There are also pillars that can help with the stability and longevity of your career in cybersecurity.
Tom Gilheany recently wrote a post for the Cisco Learning Network blog that outlines the four pillars of a security career. These pillars are foundational, and will help you achieve what you want from your security career.
- Operating Systems — Your goal should be to change your level of understanding from a user/desktop level, to an administrator/server level. You should know how applications, subsystems and users reside in an operating system. Know how these pieces interact with one another in case you need to clean up a compromised system.
- Experience with Coding — Know at least one programming/scripting language like C, Python, or Perl.
- Networking — Networking and communications are laced with a number of security threats. Have a fundamental understanding of networking so you can know how a system can be remotely breached or compromised.
- Basic Security Principles — Learn good practices in both general security and environmental security. Learn how to recognize suspicious activity, and be aware of what is considered normal in a business or system environment.
Throughout your training, study about possible cybersecurity jobs that you could land. Search out the aspects of the career that you will like the most. This will help you focus your studies.
A successful cybersecurity career must be built on the stable foundation of these four pillars. If you want your career to last a lifetime, don’t leave out the most important pieces.
About the Author — Jake Slater is the social media manager for GoCertify and a graduate of Brigham Young University. Jake is a pillar of the TestOut community.