How to Study Cyber Security?


The rising number of cyberattacks every year has prompted the emergence of cybersecurity as a new field. The big question is, how do we study cyber security? Even though cyber security in education is expanding at universities, the demand for qualified workers is growing. Fortunately, a superabundance of online courses and open-source resources is available to anyone interested in learning cybersecurity fundamentals and launching a career. It’s possible that a person with no formal training in cybersecurity could be as competent as someone with a four-year degree in the field.

Remember that learning cyber security on your own can be challenging. You should be self-driven and able to control your learning. If you’re interested in a career change and want to learn cybersecurity, you must fit that study time into your schedule. There are many new concepts to learn when starting from scratch in the field of cyber security, so you must be committed and persistent. This book will show you how to become an expert in cybersecurity and point you toward valuable resources.

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Is Self-Teaching Possible When It Comes to Cybersecurity?

These days, countless online courses and learning resources can help you learn cybersecurity independently. Cybersecurity study material from top universities like MIT, Harvard, Stanford, and others is freely available online. Everything about information security will be covered, from spotting potential dangers to implementing what you’ve learned to rid a company of its security vulnerabilities.

Also, websites like Coursera, edX, Udemy, and Springboard offer excellent, cost-free online training programs that introduce students to various aspects of cybersecurity.

When we ask some professionals about how we study cybersecurity, The classic answer would be getting a BSc degree—a four-year program leading to a bachelor’s degree in cybersecurity.   A Master’s program usually takes another two years after that. Alternative methods of education include cybersecurity courses and materials found online. Doing so will require six months to a year to acquire the necessary skills for entry-level employment. Becoming an expert in a particular field can take three to six months of intensive study at a boot camp.

Educational Prerequisites for entry-level Positions in the cybersecurity Industry

Many different types of people work on the subject of cyber security. Regardless of experience level, everyone has something to offer in the conversation about cybersecurity. This diversity in schooling causes a wide range of cyber security training requirements. For example, a bachelor’s degree is only sometimes necessary for entry-level positions in the cybersecurity industry.

However, a bachelor’s degree (and often a master’s) is required to enter the higher-level labor market.

A Chief Information Security Officer (CISO) is a mid-level executive who develops, implements, and oversees an organization’s cyber security strategy and plan. This position typically requires a bachelor’s degree in cyber security or a related field and 7-12 years of relevant work experience. Some of the largest corporations in the world now demand or prefer candidates with at least a Master’s degree in cybersecurity or a related discipline. However, earning relevant credentials is essential to advancing your cybersecurity profession.

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An Entry-Level Career in Cybersecurity

After we figure out how to study cyber security, the second question will be about getting into the sector. Gaining entry into the cybersecurity field requires at least a high school diploma or a General Equivalency Diploma (GED). However, a Bachelor’s degree in a technical field, such as computer science, information technology, etc., is strongly recommended for those who wish to work in cybersecurity. After learning the fundamentals, you can further your education with a cyber security boot camp that will allow you to focus on a specific field area.

You should also be familiar with ethical hacking, penetration testing, the cloud, and the SaaS model. Possessing working knowledge of multiple operating systems is also highly desirable. Soft skills like critical thinking, problem-solving, meticulousness, and clear communication are essential for a career in cybersecurity.

How you should learn cybersecurity depends on your starting point, preferred learning style, and level of commitment. You can start learning the fundamentals now that you know where to seek cybersecurity training information.

Learn everything you can from forums, videos, tutorials, wikis, and Reddit while taking an online course. Contact the course’s instructors or fellow online learners for advice whenever needed.

Top 10 Rated Cyber Security Courses on Udemy in 2024

1. Get Some Grounding with a Primer

When you enroll in a cybersecurity course, you’ll have the opportunity to learn the fundamentals in a guided setting and gain hands-on experience in the field. Make the most of this chance to investigate whether or not a profession in information security would be a good fit for you.

Some examples of what you might learn in an introductory cybersecurity course are:

  • Security measures and potential vulnerabilities in cyberspace
  • Compliance with industry security standards
  • Data, network, and OS protection
  • Reaction to an Incident
  • Intrusion Testing
  • Insights into Cyber Threats

By first getting a bird’s-eye view of the field, you can determine what areas of cybersecurity interest you, what skills you already possess, and what skills you need to develop to advance in your chosen field.

Get a head start on your job search with this online security certificate program from the experts at IBM, and finish it in less than six months.

Get practice with standard security tools like SIEMs and packet analyzers in a simulated online setting. To put your knowledge to use, examine a real-world security incident and suggest changes that would have prevented it.

2. Think About How Much You Care About Technological Advancements

Challenging are different. If you are genuinely interested in technology, learning cybersecurity will be easier than you might think. Developing an interest in your project’s technology could help you master previously intractable tasks.

Educating oneself can be a powerful means of sparking interest in a subject. Getting involved in a community of other security professionals is also helpful if you are the type of person who thrives off the enthusiasm of others.

Take a class or two, and you might realize it’s different from your true calling. Sure, that’s fine, too. However, only some should pursue a career in cybersecurity despite its potential benefits.

3. Educate Yourself Daily, Even If It’s Just a Little

It is unnecessary to give up everything and enroll in a full-time boot camp or get a degree in cybersecurity. Spending just a little time each day can have a significant impact over time. First, commit to devoting 15 minutes per day to cyber security. Set aside time to study regularly, preferably at the same time each day.

In addition to devoting regular study time, it’s wise to outline specific goals for each study session.

4. Train To Be a “Good Guy” Hacker.

Learning by doing is highly effective. Ethical hacking is a way for people interested in cybersecurity to gain hands-on experience with the tools and techniques of the trade.

A Definition of Ethical Hacking:

Ethical hacking is defined by the EC-Council, which offers the widely-recognized Certified Ethical Hacker certification as “the process of detecting vulnerabilities in an application, system, or organization’s infrastructure that an attacker can use to exploit an individual or organization.”

Ethical hacking is any method to gain unauthorized access to a computer, network, program, or data source.

Several legitimate, game-like resources are available online that can help you hone your cybersecurity skills at no cost.

Crack the Safe with a Hack of

You may want to investigate bug bounty programs to further your education and career. These are initiatives in which businesses reward third-party security researchers for discovering and disclosing vulnerabilities. As a bonus, you can interact with other security experts in a real-world setting and hone your networking skills. Examine sites like Bugcrowd and HackerOne to discover a list of available bounties.

5. Rehearse in a simulated setting.

Numerous cybersecurity programs offer online labs where students can test their newly acquired knowledge with authentic security tools in a safe, simulated setting. You can get as much practice as you need by creating your virtual lab, but it’s more convenient to have them already set up as part of a structured course.

There are three standard components of any laboratory:

  • We are hosting virtual machines in the cloud.
  • A computer system that is the focus of an attack
  • A machine you’ll use for attacking and planning attacks.

6- You Don’t Need to Buy Fancy Laptops at The Beginning

The world of cybersecurity is often associated with cutting-edge technology, leading some to believe that having a high-end laptop is a prerequisite. However, the truth is, you don’t need the latest, most expensive laptop to begin your journey into this field.

While a powerful computer can undoubtedly enhance certain aspects of your cybersecurity learning experience, it’s not a barrier to entry. Many fundamental concepts and skills in cybersecurity can be learned on modest or even older computer models.

What matters most is not your laptop’s processing power or sleek design but rather your commitment to learning and the resources available. You can explore cybersecurity basics, coding, networking, and even hands-on exercises on various devices, including budget-friendly or refurbished laptops.

Adopt a resourceful approach. Leverage cloud-based labs, virtual machines, and online platforms that offer simulations and practical exercises. These resources often require minimal hardware specifications, making them accessible to various devices.

Cybersecurity is about understanding vulnerabilities, analyzing risks, and devising solutions. Your determination to learn and explore the vast realm of cybersecurity is far more critical than the specifications of your laptop.

So, don’t let the idea of needing an expensive laptop discourage you. Focus on leveraging available resources, dedicating yourself to learning, and honing your skills to embark on a successful cybersecurity journey.

Blend in some skills you’d use in the workplace.

Instead of focusing solely on developing your technical expertise, take some time to hone your abilities in the workplace.

You will need to be able to explain complicated ideas to people who are less technically savvy than you are when working in cybersecurity. You may collaborate with teams in different legal or public relations departments. Decision-making on the fly is a standard part of many cybersecurity jobs. This means that employers highly seek critical thinking skills.

Books, blogs, and podcasts abound on the topic of professional development.

Final Words

As the digital landscape expands, the need for cybersecurity experts grows exponentially. While the field demands qualified professionals, the avenues for self-education in cybersecurity have expanded remarkably. The wealth of online resources, university programs, and alternative learning pathways offers a vast opportunity for aspiring professionals to delve into this dynamic field.

However, self-teaching cybersecurity demands dedication and self-discipline. Learning independently requires commitment, as the field encompasses many concepts and skills. Whether you’re considering a career shift or eager to explore the world of cybersecurity, this guide aims to serve as your compass, pointing towards invaluable resources and strategies for mastery.

The route to cybersecurity proficiency varies from foundational courses to specialized boot camps. The educational prerequisites differ across job levels, from entry-level positions emphasizing fundamental technical knowledge to higher-level roles requiring advanced degrees and years of experience.

An aspiring cybersecurity professional must possess a diverse skill set, including technical prowess in systems and networks, familiarity with ethical hacking and cloud technologies, and soft skills like critical thinking and clear communication.

The guide underscores the significance of a continuous learning mindset. From introductory courses that provide a broad understanding of cybersecurity to hands-on experiences through labs and ethical hacking, consistent learning is critical.

Ultimately, self-teaching in cybersecurity is a journey that demands commitment, curiosity, and adaptability. While the path may seem daunting, the resources, guidance, and determination outlined in this guide can empower anyone to embark on this enriching cybersecurity career journey.

So, embrace the challenge, explore the realms of cybersecurity, and let your pursuit of knowledge and expertise pave the way to a fulfilling career defending the digital world.


1. How can self-taught individuals ensure their cybersecurity knowledge is up to industry standards without formal education or certification?

Self-taught individuals often face the challenge of validating their cybersecurity skills without traditional credentials. To ensure their knowledge meets industry standards, they can leverage various strategies. One approach is to engage in hands-on practice through cybersecurity challenges, capture-the-flag competitions, and simulated environments. Additionally, participating in online communities and forums allows individuals to seek feedback from experienced professionals and stay updated on emerging trends and best practices. Seeking mentorship from seasoned cybersecurity experts can also provide valuable guidance and validation of skills.

2. Are there any specific strategies mentioned for balancing self-study with other commitments, such as work or family responsibilities?

While the article emphasizes dedication and persistence in self-studying cybersecurity, it doesn’t provide concrete tips for managing study time alongside existing responsibilities. Readers may seek advice on time management techniques or effective study schedules tailored to their circumstances. It’s essential to prioritize learning goals, allocate dedicated study periods, and leverage resources that offer flexibility, such as online courses and tutorials. Additionally, setting realistic expectations and establishing a support network can help individuals maintain consistency in their self-study efforts.

3. What are the potential drawbacks or limitations of self-teaching cybersecurity compared to formal education or certification programs?

Self-teaching cybersecurity offers flexibility and accessibility, but it also comes with potential drawbacks. Without the structure and guidance provided by formal education or certification programs, individuals may struggle to cover comprehensive topics, develop practical skills, or receive feedback on their progress. Moreover, the lack of recognized credentials from accredited institutions could limit career opportunities and credibility in the eyes of employers. Additionally, self-learners may encounter challenges in staying motivated, navigating complex concepts independently, and accessing hands-on experiences required for specific roles.