Most people wonder if it’s actually worth investing time and money in cybersecurity certifications. When searching the web for answers you are going to find a handful of articles explaining why it is not necessary to get certified to succeed in this field. The truth is, they aren’t wrong or right.

Having certifications on your resume will only let employers know you have subject matter knowledge, but it is not a reflection of experience or skills with practical application. These aren’t necessarily more or less important than the certifications, but they are critical when an employer is choosing among different candidates for a job opening.

So, Why Get Certified?

Because you have to. Just like eating fruits and vegetables is important for your overall health, certificates are important for your overall cybersecurity career and professional health. Are they absolutely critical? No. Will they help you overall? Absolutely.

Adding certifications to your resume will help make it stand out from your competition when applying to a job, it will also demonstrate your level of commitment and can be very helpful to negotiate for a higher salary. It also will frequently serve as a minimum qualification that a hiring manager feels new talent must have.

At CyberWarrior Academy, we are firm believers that cybersecurity certifications are worth the effort because they work as a complement to the work experience you have and more importantly to the instruction you also need to get through other training opportunities. Getting certified is a critical way to further your expertise and understanding in the dynamic world of cybersecurity. It is also a way to demonstrate to a hiring manager that you know what it takes to succeed and be a part of a team.

There are different certifications out there. But, before you choose which one to pursue first, you need to understand that not all certifications serve the same purpose. You need to train for those certifications that hiring managers are looking for in the cybersecurity career track you want to pursue.

There are also foundational cybersecurity certifications that we believe are critical as building blocks to launch your career and ensure success.

CompTIA A+

A must-have credential that qualifies you for technical support and IT operational roles. As explained by CompTIA, the certification prepares anyone who is the “go-to person in endpoint management and technical support roles”by giving the skills and knowledge necessary to perform critical IT support tasks.  

CompTIA Network+

The best starting point for beginners that want to work as a system engineer, network support specialist or network analyst. Network+ ensures you have the knowledge and skills to design and implement functional networks; configure, manage and maintain network devices; identify benefits and drawbacks of existing network configurations; implement network security and troubleshoot problems. 

CompTIA Security+

This is one of the must-have certifications as it teaches you the skills and knowledge required in any cybersecurity role. Among the skills you will develop are: detect indicators of compromise, understand penetration testing, install and configure systems to secure applications, implement secure network architecture concepts, install and configure identity and access services, implement risk management best practices. This is considered the first step into cybersecurity, from here you can build upon your resume move from an entry-level position to a more intermediate job.  

CEH: Certified Ethical Hacker 

Becoming a CEH will help you understand how a hacker thinks and acts in order to prevent and protect your organization from their malicious techniques. This certification will guide you through a broad area of hacking practices and different types of cyber-attacks, including areas as network scanning, pen testing, cryptography, viruses, trojans, social engineering.