Spam emails, bot networks, hackers, worms, viruses and Trojans: more than half of all companies have already been victims of cyber attacks . Competitors and criminals try to spy out internal data, paralyze operating systems or manipulate the company’s own Internet pages. Private individuals are also affected by online crime. So-called phishing is particularly widespread here : fraudsters use fake pages to steal passwords for online payment systems or for online banking. In the worst case, they manage to clear the accounts of those affected. The latest attack surface for criminals is offered by tablet PCs and smartphones, which they spy on using malicious apps. It is all the more urgent. Experts who protect data and networks from these external attacks .
An overview of the IT security course
According to Medicinelearners.com, some universities and technical colleges have responded to the demand for IT security experts and set up their own courses on IT security. The orientation of the individual study programs is sometimes quite different. There are engineering -oriented courses as well as courses that incorporate business management content. In addition, there is the possibility of acquiring a certificate for IT security in classic computer science courses.
In the independent bachelor’s programs on IT security, students first familiarize themselves with the basics of computer science . The students get to know different operating systems and databases and learn mathematics . Subjects such as electrical engineering are added to the engineering-oriented courses . In the programs with a focus on business administration, students deal with e-business or risk management, for example .
Subjects such as cryptography or system security are all about IT security . Here the students acquire their first knowledge of encryption methods and security functions.
In the higher semesters, the number of courses on IT security increases. At some universities, students can set their own priorities, for example on data protection or cryptography. Internships and study projects in which hackers are simulated , giving the opportunity to the students to put their knowledge into practice.
Anyone who would like to continue their education and qualify for management positions after completing their bachelor’s degree can follow a master’s degree in IT security. Graduates of general computer science courses also have the opportunity to continue their education in the master’s programs on the subject of IT security. As a rule, the master’s students focus on topics such as system and software security or cryptography.
Studying IT security: requirements
Prospective students should of course love working with the computer. As a rule, applicants do not necessarily need knowledge of programming at first, as they have the opportunity to acquire this in their basic studies. In contrast, a sound basic knowledge of mathematics is essential to understand the basics of computer science. In the master’s programs at the latest, a good command of English is also required, as the specialist literature is often only available in English.
Due to the rise in cyber crime, the need for qualified security experts is also increasing. The career prospects for IT security graduates are therefore very good . Potential employers are already courting them towards the end of their studies. This includes not only companies, but also state institutions such as secret services, the police or the Federal Office for Information Security.
The field of activity of the graduates depends on their specialization and practical experience. For example, you are responsible for data security in companies and authorities, create security concepts, check the systems for possible weak points or pursue cybercrime on the Internet. Training employees or certifying companies can also be part of the job of IT security experts. Many go into business for themselves with their own consulting office. A career in research is also possible. Graduates develop software for authorities or banks, for example, or design security tools. Master’s graduates are also able to do a doctorate and pursue an academic career at the university.
Study abroad IT security: advantages
English language skills are a must when studying IT security. It is advisable to study a semester abroad in order to improve or perfect it. A stay abroad offers many other advantages. On the one hand, you get a different, more global perspective on the topic of IT security. Other specializations at foreign universities offer you the opportunity to expand your specialist repertoire. A semester abroad also makes a lot of positive contributions to personal development. Eventually you get to know a different culture and a lot of interesting people. You will acquire soft skills such as independence, flexibility and assertiveness. These will later be decisive criteria for success when applying for management positions.