Jobs in network security have gathered pace in terms of demand since the WannaCry ransomware attack that targeted the UK’s NHS in May. Bringing that aspect of cybersecurity into the public consciousness, corporate networks are susceptible to breaches most typically via their endpoints, or in laymen’s terms, commonly portable devices such as laptops, smartphones and printers. As the Internet of Things (IoT) grows to encompass an ever widening variety of devices yielding internet connectivity to a TCP/IP network, companies are being left more exposed than ever to cyber-attacks.
Network security jobs in the UK are consequently one of the most prevalent across the cybersecurity job boards. Employers are looking for network security engineers, some with design experience and a CCDP certification to assist the company’s architecture team. With basic responsibilities equating to the maintenance and testing of the organisation’s security architecture, the centralisation and simplification of overall security visibility within the organisation and supporting the company’s mission-critical platforms with leading security practices; network security specialists are expected to be excellent communicators, fast thinkers and responsible in their handling of the design and delivery of secure networking solutions.
An understanding of the most up to date modern technologies on the market is a must for those seeking network security opportunities, as these individuals will be directly influencing network and security services, recommending changes and improvements and providing the organisation’s infrastructure team with the best products available. Those in senior roles will be called upon for consulting, advisory and mentoring support to fellow team members and junior employees as well as managing support processes and responses to potential cyber threats.
Many businesses are looking for network security candidates with experience of Cisco environments and CCNP (or the aforementioned CCDP for those in a design capacity) certifications, as well as excellent routing skills and solid knowledge of Cisco WAN and LAN equipment, such as Catalyst and Nexus. Security certs including CISSP, SSCP, GIAC, QSA and CEH are also revered by those looking to fill network security roles. Technical experience with firewalls including Juniper, Checkpoint, Palo Alto and Fortinet Fortigate, particularly gained while working within a multi-national organisation, is also highly attractive to employers and recruiters looking to fill network security jobs in the UK. That technical experience will prove invaluable as you take on project work and share your expertise in the delivery and management of firewalls, within the enterprise. Those working in network security are also required to have an excellent understanding of security best practices as they make up the third line of defence against threats, intrusions and data leakages.
In terms of salaries across the UK for network security professionals, the closer you are to the capital the more you can expect to be paid with average salaries for those in senior roles hinging between £60,000-70,000 in London and £75,000-80,000 just outside in Oxford, while in regional areas salaries vary between £20,000-60,000 dependent on seniority, role capacity and experience.