Top 17 Security Analyst Skills for a Successful Career
This post provides major skills and qualities you need to have as a security analyst to have a successful career.
Please, read on:
The system security of an organization is one of their biggest priorities as well as their major concern.
This is true because in this digital era, though technology has made great impact in the business world, yet the other way round, it has brought along with it new dimensions of problems such as hacking, virus attack, and other cybercrimes, which daily are targeted at reputable and well-known companies.
To this effect, there is a need for competent security analysts. The stock of security analysts have risen over the years for the purpose of tackling the problems mentioned above.
Who is a Security Analyst?
A security analyst is someone employed by an organization to prevent and handle security threat to their computer systems emanating from cyber-attacks.
His/her duty is to make sure that the computer systems in the organization are highly analyzed and safeguarded from external intrusion and attack.
The various skills and qualities needed by a security analyst to ensure that system security is an achievable goal are shown below:
- Good Listening Skills
To be a good security analyst demands that you have to be a good listener. You need to listen to both people at the top and people under you to get more details to help channel your ideas and energy in the right direction.
It is through listening that you can fathom what the major security concern in the organization is.
The absence of good listening skills makes the security analyst to make assumptions, which in most cases turn out to be incorrect, and that is not a good way of establishing yourself as a top security analyst in the company or organization you are working with.
In security matters, assumption is the least thing that you a security analyst needs. This is because it paints you as non-professional or an amateur on the job.
So, to prevent this, you should be able to listen and analyze every detailed data made available to you by the organization.
2. Critical Thinking
Critical thinking is one attribute of every good security analyst. A good analyst should be able to listen and analyze every detail made available to him/her.
To help him/her do this, he/she has to develop the ability to think deeply and critically analyze every data or information made available to him/her.
To be a critical thinker demands that you as a security analyst should be focused enough to observe events and activities in the organization.
It is in the process of observation that you can pick out relevant facts, and with that you can draw conclusions to your observation.
Upon drawing conclusions, solution is proffered to the immediate problem.
The endpoint of every critical thinking is to proffer solutions to the problem at hand. Some problems cannot be solved without good observation, research, and critical thinking.
So this has a change reaction if activated.
3. Complex Problem Solving Skills
Security analysts are some of the people with the trickiest jobs in the digital world. This is due to the fact that some security concerns are more complex than can be expected.
This is true in cases like intrusion of new viruses into the system and some of these viruses are very difficult to trace and handle.
System security is very critical to the smooth technological management of the organization. So, the system analyst should be someone who should be able to not only detect complex problems but also have the ability to solve them.
To do this requires high level of analytical skills, without which, handling complex problems will be almost impossible.
The security analyst should be able to analyze and compare problems to ascertain the level of danger they pose to the organization.
Effective communication is an invaluable skill every security analyst should have.
A security analyst gets information and is also saddled with the responsibility of providing timely and important information to the organization. This is important for the safety of the entire organization.
First in line for effective communication by the system analyst is the management. A security analyst works closely with the management to report his/her findings; as well know what their thoughts are about what is needed from him/her from time to time.
This level of communication is very important to the organization.
The second line of communication is between the security analyst and the staff of the organization.
He/she teaches them how to maintain cyber security and general system security. This helps them stay safe at all times in the aspect of making use of the system at their disposal.
5. Decision Making
Data gotten from different sources in the organization are presented to the security analyst for decision making.
He/she thinks through the data made available to him/her from the people in the workplace and he/she acts upon them based on what he/she thinks will best serve the interest of the organization.
Decision making is one of the critical jobs of every security analyst. He/she decides what is good for the system and what is good as a whole for the organization.
Since decisions are to be made regularly, it requires high level of analytical skills to be able to make rational decisions.
These decisions are issues that will have to shape the future of the IT security of the organization.
This is important for the future of the organization in the industry. Remember that one thing that must not leak is the secrets of the organization.
6. System Analysis
System analysis is the careful analysis of how a system in the organization works, or how it was designed to work.
Every organization has its system and how the system is meant to work. This is what detects how information are handled in the organization.
The duty of the security analyst is to make sure he/she analyzes the system in the workplace and make sure that he/she completely understands how the system is designed and how it is meant to work.
This is a special skill every security analyst needs to have in order to succeed in his/her job.
Through the careful and meticulous analysis of the system, the security analysis should be able to draw conclusions and recommend what should be done based on his/her findings.
Careful thinking and systematic analysis of the system will definitely be helpful to anyone who wants to succeed as a security analyst.
7. Quick Learning
Any security analyst who wants to excel in his/her job must be someone who is very quick to learn and adjust to different problems in the course of his/her job.
This is because the work of a security analyst demands constant learning of new ideologies, as well as technologies.
Part of the learning process is learning new problems. This is very important for every security analysts.
In the digital world, it is not just important to learn but also to learn as quickly as you can.
A good security analyst should be able to learn about the latest attacks and what facilitates them, as well as how they operate in the system.
Another thing left to learn is how to counter the attacks. This requires learning new technologies to contain and deal with the attacks.
Problems bothering on hacking and other cybercrimes are issues that demand constantly being in touch with the latest technologies. Failure to do will make you incompetent in no time.
8. Being Proactive
By being proactive means being one step ahead, and being able to detect problems even before they happen.
This is important. For you to succeed as a security analyst, you should be able to predict future problems and prepare for them before they happen.
This does not in any way make you a negative minded person; rather it puts you in a position to handle problems easily because you have prepared for them.
When you anticipate a problem, you will prepare well for it, rather than reacting when they happen.
So predict problems and you will prepare better to handle them.
Though reaction is important, however, sometimes it does not bring solution instantly. It is worthy of note that prevention is far better than cure.
This applies to this situation. As a security analyst, make more researches and follow trends and you will be able to predict to an extent what an incoming problem may look like.
9. Intrusion Prevention Skills
Having intrusion prevention skills is one that may not be entirely possible because issues like hacking always take new dimensions.
However, it is necessary for a security analyst to at least ward off some attacks on the first observation.
To do this, a good security analyst should be able to anticipate loopholes and fix them even before they become obvious.
This requires careful analysis of trends and how things are done in the workplace and spot out the possible loopholes.
When this is done, preventive measures are taken to prevent the preventable attacks and reduce the damage of the non-preventable ones.
Without this special skill, the organization is prone or vulnerable to incessant attacks on its systems; this cannot help your course of staying in your job for long.
Security analyst job is not for people who are not ready to dig deep and provide solutions to problems that may not yet be in view.
10. Risk Management
Managing risk is one of the jobs of security analysts. Not all attacks are entirely preventable but the damages or risks can be managed or reduced.
For attacks that cannot be prevented entirely, the security analyst is saddled with the duty of minimizing the damage.
For you to be called a good security analyst, you have to desire and acquire risk management skill, knowing fully well that this is one of the major reasons you are hired in that organization.
To secure or maintain your job as a security analyst, you should have it at the back of your mind that your relevance is largely dependent on your ability to manage risk and reduce the level of damage done by hackers and viruses on the system.
You must train yourself and your team to manage risk in the organization.
11. Detail Oriented
For you to be an excellent security analyst, you have to be detail oriented, and by this we mean valuing every single data made available to you both in and outside the organization as long as it is related to your job as a security analyst.
This can help you in carrying out your routine duties as a security analyst.
To be able to solve some problems as a security analyst, you must be able to pay attention to the minutest details of data made available to you.
You must value every data and work with them as much as you can. Trying to ignore any minute detail can be your undoing as a security analyst.
Sometimes, some critical data or information can be pivotal to some important decisions in the organization.
Though they may not appear as you might desire, but you have to be patient enough to unravel the mysteries that may be contained in some minute information.
12. Time Management
Time management is the ability of a security analyst to make the utmost use of his/her time to solve organizational security problems.
Time management is important to the security analyst and his/her team. This is for emergencies and timely interventions to wade off dangers.
To make utmost use of his/her time, the security analyst should be able to outline his/her activities with his/her team and make sure to stick with his/her timetable and teach his/her team to do so.
Teach them to understand the importance of time in executing their jobs.
To manage time demands proactive planning. Planning is the bedrock for success in the business of security analysis.
This is important to the work of a security analyst. Plan your activities and steps you’ll need to take.
This will help you make sure you don’t waste unnecessary time doing what is not needed.
13. IT Knowledge
Security analysts need to have advanced knowledge of IT. Every security analyst should be conversant with advanced applications within and off his/her field to be able to keep in touch with the latest technologies in the digital world.
In the digital world, one of the things that can keep you competitive and on top of your job is your ability to learn more technologies and software whether they are purely related to your field or not.
Every new technology or software is worth learning.
Failure to upgrade yourself on the latest IT knowledge will definitely make you irrelevant in the digital industry career.
So, it is safe to say that to remain relevant in your job and industry, you have to be able to learn new technologies, as well as know how to apply them to your job.
14. Management of Personnel Resources
The ability to effective manage a team is important to you as a security analyst. Understand this and make utmost use of their expertise, energy and wealth of experience.
To manage your team effectively demands that you have to exhibit some wonderful leadership qualities which is geared towards bringing out the best in them at all times.
Bringing out the best in them requires that you know how to work with them and play to their strength.
The strength of your team is a big factor that will determine how far you can go to handle security concerns of the system in the workplace.
This is true because just one idea from any member of your team can be the solution you have been looking for to solve a current problem.
Creativity is also one of the attributes that should be showcased by every good security analyst.
Creativity is needed in the daily evaluation of the security system of the organization. It is one thing that can help you as a security analyst stay top in your career.
What then does it mean and what does it take to be creative as a security analyst in an organization?
To be creative means to be able to develop different means of getting problems related to the security system of the organization solved, especially in unconventional ways unknown to many.
Being creative demands constant improvement and deliberate learning and application of valuable knowledge to your job.
For the security analyst, he/she has to be able to handle problems in unconventional and creative ways. This can go a long way to boosting your profile in the organization.
16. Writing Skills
Records and other vital information are supposed to be kept. This is important to both the organization and the security analyst who wishes to excel in his job.
Writing skills is not just limited to people with jobs that obviously need more of speaking and writing skills but also to a security analyst.
What are the things to be written down by a system analyst? This is an important question that begs for an answer. If you don’t understand this, you may end up neglecting the necessary things you ought to note down in the course of executing your job.
The following are the things you need to write down as a security analyst: the timing of every activity you are involved in at your workplace, some of the possible loopholes you observed in the security system of the organization, and what can be done about them.
Also, know that whatever you write should be easy to be decoded by another security analyst and not just you.
Observation is important to unravelling some mysteries. There are some facts you can’t find without employing the power of observation.
You need to improve your observation skills if you want to succeed in your job as a security analyst.
What are you expected to observe? The things to observe are the processes and unfolding of events in the workplace.
By careful observation of activities and flow of information in the workplace, you can decode a lot of issues that need utmost attention.
If you can observe well then you can easily decode information that may not be easily decoded by any other person.
That is how powerful observation can be. So, this is one thing you have to do to get amazing results in your job as a security analyst.
Security Analyst Skill for Resume
If you are writing a resume for a security analyst position, you can make a great skills section by applying the above skills and qualities.
The skills section of a resume, which is also called the core competence section, is where the recruiter wants to see the skills and qualities that you are bringing to the security analyst position that will enable you to excel in it.
If you have developed the above qualities and skills as a security analyst, it will be wise to highlight them in the core competence section of your resume.
This will get the attention of most recruiters as you will be declaring that you have the required qualities and skills to be effective as a security analyst in their organizations.
Trying to be a good security analyst demands a lot of analytical skills, observation skills, and data mining skills, and other skills and qualities.
This post has provided the best skills and qualities you need to develop to be effective on your job as a security analyst and get to the top of your career.