Network Security Engineer job description guide

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What is a Network Security Engineer?

Network Security Engineers are responsible for the design, implementation, and integration of cyber-security solutions. This involves installing, maintaining, and upgrading security-related hardware and software.

They are also involved in identifying any gaps or vulnerabilities in existing security measures, and preparing strategies to mitigate or manage security threats and breaches.

What should be included in a Network Security Engineer job description?

The Network Security Engineer is required to not only prevent security breaches, but to act should one occur. It is thus up to them to:

  • Test for vulnerabilities
  • Prepare reports on their security assessments, incidents, and recommendations
  • Create best practice security policies and procedures
  • Threat intelligence
  • Liaise with vendors to implement solutions
  • Create and maintain documentation relating to security measures
  • Educate clients on cyber-security

As cyber-security is a fast-paced, dynamic field, Network Security Engineers should keep up with the latest technology trends and developments, as well as keeping up with new threat developments.

What skills and qualifications should a Network Security Engineer have?

While a tertiary education in computer science and/or cyber-security is recommended, it is not strictly necessary.

In fact, many companies prefer their cyber-security specialists -- including Network Security Engineers -- to verify their best practice, up-to-date knowledge via reputable certifications.

The most popular include:

  • Certified Information Systems Security Professional (CISSP) by (ISC)²
  • Certified Information Systems Analyst (CISA) by ISACA
  • Certified Ethical Hacker (CEH) by EC Council
  • Certified Information Security Manager by ISACA
  • Security+ by CompTIA+

Network Security Engineers should also be able to demonstrate experience creating and maintaining security systems. A thorough understanding of the latest and most common hacking techniques and cyber-threats is essential.

Other technical skills include:

  • Back-end programming languages
  • Security frameworks
  • Computer forensics tools
  • Risk management
  • Cryptographic and key infrastructure protocols
  • Unix and Windows
  • Cisco and Fortinet
  • Application firewalls, SIEM, and IDS/IPS

Soft skills list:

  • Ability to work under high pressure
  • Communication
  • Organisation
  • Problem solving
  • Analytical thinking
  • Teamwork/collaboration

How much does a Network Security Engineer earn?

$100,000 - $180,000

A Network Security Engineer salary is determined typically by the number of years of experience, soft and technical skills, and the scale of responsibilities in the organisation. To find out what a Network Security Engineer is earning this year, download our complimentary Robert Half Salary Guide.

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