June 2, 2021

Feeling Disillusioned – Keep Pursuing Career in Security?

Not really sure what I am hoping to accomplish with this post, but just get my thoughts out and maybe get some input.

After getting a degree in finance I was working in banking for a few years and was bored as hell. Eventually I found networking and cybersecurity and decided that was the way I wanted to go since I could figure out how things work, fix things, and honestly was just amazed with all the new stuff I was discovering. Got the CompTIA trifecta and CCNA, learned programming (snake, coffee, C+1), broke into general IT and am now working in a NOC for a cloud provider (probably not the one you’re thinking of). I have excelled in all my roles and have enjoyed learning new things in each new job, although I find I get to the end of the learning curve pretty quickly. The next step is security, probably a SOC -> IR -> TI? RE?

The issue I am running into is that as I talk to and connect with more people in the industry as I try to make the jump, it seems like most people don’t actually enjoy their jobs that much. Maybe the company doesn’t take security seriously, maybe they’re overworked, regardless it doesn’t sound like people are actually enjoying day to day work. I feel like there’s this promise of a sexy job fighting bad guys, but it turns out to be a lot of politics and button clicking. I have also realized through working in a NOC the high ticket, repetitive issue environment is rough and I am not sure if I want to do that again in a SOC and then IR and always be putting out fires.

Basically I am wondering if it is still worth it to continue pursuing a career in security if it seems like a place passions go to die and get sucked into “real job” world, but there’s still tons of stress. Or if I should go after something less stressful that would just be a job. Compliance (also security, I know), software engineering, something still in the tech vein but just not security related. Networking seems to be more about fixing stuff when it breaks then actual design and implementation unless I stay in networking for 5-7 years, but not sure I want to invest that kind of time. I kind of find myself just wanting to go be outside more and more, not have to worry about work once I am off the clock, and just working an easy, albeit probably boring, job. I could also just be burned out from shift work and need a break.

Thoughts? Opinions?

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