Jobs in IT Support
Working in IT support demands a strong set of skills and diverse knowledge. You’ll need to familiarize yourself with a variety of machines, systems, and software. Furthermore, your job will demand that you keep learning and stay up-to-date with rapid developments in technology.
When it comes to jobs in IT support and in tech more generally, one particular area that’s receiving a great deal of attention is cyber security. Recently the administration unveiled the Cybersecurity National Action Plan (CNAP), an outline for an initiative that will combine government and private sector resources to improve cyber security and stay ahead of hackers.
As spelled out in a press release from the White House, one of CNAP’s goals is to bolster cyber security education and offer some additional incentives for people to study and work in this area; for example, people joining the federal workforce in the area of cyber security may have a greater chance of benefiting from student loan forgiveness.
Cyber security skills
Even if you’re planning to work in general IT support and not focus on cyber security, employers will welcome any skills you can offer in this area. Data breaches and other IT disasters are a nightmare for businesses, non-profits and government agencies. At least some of your duties will include strategies for preventing, detecting and rapidly responding to cyber attacks.
Your cyber security skills should include a knowledge of firewalls, and network routers, switches and load balancers. Ideally, you’ll know some scripting languages, such as PHP and Perl.
You’ll also know how to apply your understanding of different operating systems, network architecture and applications to evaluate cyber security vulnerabilities; for example, would you be able to examine your employer’s website and identify points of weakness that a hacker could exploit?
Regardless of where you choose to work, developing a cyber security skill set will likely impress employers.