Author of Change Your Career: Computer Network Security as Your New Profession
Author Motivation: Troy McMillan
Interested in changing your career? Interested in Network security? Have you ever wondered what it would take to pursue a a career in IT security? Although several articles have been written on Network Security, building a career in security involves more than what you can get in one article. You need a comprehensive take-action guide. The book has been written.
Author Motivation by Troy McMillan
During my years of teaching, lecturing and consulting, I was constantly asked by students and other career changers how to navigate the confusing sea of acronyms that we call the IT field. Even when I think of my own experience as a career changer, I can recall the confusion I faced in trying to figure out what I wanted to study and, more importantly, what particular part of the IT field would be financially rewarding as well as interesting.Consequently when asked by my publisher to consider writing this book, I jumped at the chance to help bring some order out of this chaos. After many years in the field and with certifications in many different areas, I have finally succeeded in grasping the overall picture of training, certification and job placement, and have helped to guide many students and friends through this maze. So the challenge became how to organize all this data into a format that could be used by those new to the industry. I hope that what I have produced will help you in this area.
Information and network security is undoubtedly the hottest field in IT, and for good reason. Every day we read about the latest security breach, whether it be some crucial commercial database containing thousands of customer credit cards, a hospital database containing patient data, or a bank database containing private customer information. Now that it is the organization’s responsibility to protect this data, hiring security personnel trained to protect a network has become a business requirement, rather than luxury, for ALL companies.
As a result, job openings and pay scales for these positions are on the way up. Those who prepare now will be positioned well for the future. Hopefully this book will help to guide newcomers in the right direction as they make critical decisions about the investment of their time and training dollars. The advice dispensed at training facilities is often seen through the agenda of the school, so I think an unbiased view would be helpful.
By soliciting input from other noted experts in security, career planning, and the IT field in general, such as Jide Awe (Founder, Jidaw.com), I have attempted to create a one-stop shop for information relevant to every step of the journey. As such, this will hopefully become a work in progress that never ends.
For those of you who choose to make this journey, the road is hard, but the benefits are numerous to those willing to invest their time, effort, and money. Security professionals typically enjoy respect among their peers, relative autonomy in their daily work, and financial rewards near the upper end of the IT scale (which is a healthy rate at any point in the scale).
The main challenge is that there is no END to the journey. It requires constant learning. Quoting Jide Awe from my book, “Information and network security requires an enthusiasm for lifelong learning and a lifetime commitment to information technology. Keep sharp and up to date. Don’t get complacent.”
I have been asked several times how this book is different from other IT career guides. I think the answer is that this book is not overly technical, and that it pulls information from various sources and organizes it so that it can be read cover to cover or simply used as a reference book. It contains many links to a wealth of information that can help surmount all the hurdles you will encounter.
In summary, I would like to offer a few tips for the career changer considering entering this field:
· First, never let anyone tell you that you can’t do this. I am constantly amazed at the backgrounds of some of my students who have become successful in IT.
· Know yourself and be true to yourself first. Don’t do this because “the money is good.” Do it because it interests you.
· Don’t let temporary setbacks deter you. Sometimes certification tests are failed the first time around, and job interviews go badly. Don’t give up!
· Enjoy yourself along the way. Take time to celebrate the small victories!
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