January 13, 2021

I’m entry level and my company wants me to be our Security Manager???

I realize that headline is ridiculous but stick with me here.

So I’ve been working at the same place for ages (non-IT role) and did a small internship in my off time with them to finish my degree. It’s a very small company and we have 1 IT guy who knows enough to keep things running and outsources pretty much everything else.

The plan has always been for me to join our IT team once I complete my degree and train up my replacement, but it was not super clear in what capacity. I was just now told that they’d like me to essentially become our security manager while taking extra classes on the side to help bring more of that outsourced work in house.

It seems like a hell of a lot of expectation has been heaped on someone who hasn’t even held an IT position before, but they’ve assured me that for at least the first 6 months I’ll have my own contact with our outsourced IT company to help keep things on track.

I’m anxious as hell because this is a ton of pressure but am also very excited to dive in.

1) Is my company making a good choice here? Because even I’m looking at this and still thinking maybe this isn’t the best choice for them to make, y,know… from a security perspective, but they’re pretty insistent on it.

2) If you were in my shoes, what do I start studying right now to prepare myself for jumping into real world security work? What can I do to prepare me for this insane trial by fire?



Take this from someone who is in basically the same situation: there’s nowhere to go but up from here.

In the best case scenario: You get the training and support you need, and you learn a skill you never had before. Learning Security means you have to learn a ton of ancillary things about computers that will make sure you are employable at any helpdesk in the world, at the very least. If you grow, succeed, and learn, you’ve become part of one of the fastest growing industries on the planet. Given just the recent events in the news in the United States and Europe, the demand for security professionals is skyrocketing.

In the worst case scenario: You’re made a scapegoat for a failing infrastructure that your company was too lazy or inept to invest in from ground zero and thought that outsourcing half the quality at half the cost was a positive trade-off for shareholders and investors/board members/etc. During your time in the position, absorb every bit of security knowledge you can. Start studying for your Sec+ and any other certifications (A+, Network+, whatever the equivalent is today..) you think would help you stand out in the roll. Nickle and dime them until they squeeze you out. In the end, you’re still on the path to emerging into a heavily necessary market.

And as a bonus, whenever you’re applying for your next position (assuming you enjoy being in netsec), you’re entry level with experience.

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