Cybersecurity is an evolving set of tools, risk management approaches, technologies, training, and best practices that protect networks, devices, programs, and data from attacks or unauthorized access. The world relies on technology more than ever before – communications (email, smartphones), entertainment (interactive video games, social media, apps), transportation (cars, trains, airplanes), shopping (credit cards, online stores, and more) and medical equipment (electronic records). These devices and their underlying systems create digital data that can be used by hackers to disrupt operations or expose confidential information, hurting financial performance and reputation.

Many cybersecurity threats are unknown or emerging, making it difficult to prioritize and defend against them all at once. This has led to an increase in the number of data breaches, ransomware attacks, and network outages caused by unprotected devices or vulnerabilities in software and hardware. The costs of these incidents can be immense for businesses – from lost productivity to fines levied by regulatory bodies.

To keep pace with new attacks, cybersecurity must evolve to be more proactive. For example, implementing frequent backups of the most important data and settings can help mitigate the impact of a breach by providing a clean snapshot to restore systems. Multi-factor authentication is another simple way to make it harder for hackers to gain unauthorized access by raising the bar on the minimum requirements to log in, such as a biometric scan like a fingerprint or face.

The good news is that there are lots of entry-level cybersecurity jobs available for people from all backgrounds. Taking the time to understand what’s needed in each role can help you discover where your strengths lie and find your place in the industry. MDR