Entry-Level Cybersecurity Certification

Can I Get an Entry-Level Cybersecurity Certification Without an IT Background? 

April 19, 2024
| Leaman Crews
| Cybersecurity Technician

Cybersecurity has become one of the most lucrative careers in recent years. According to a prominent report, the need for information security analysts is projected to increase by 32% by 2031 (U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2023), and a major recruitment platform indicated that cybersecurity professionals in the United States earn an annual salary above USD 114,000 on average (Glassdoor, 2024).

With numbers like that, it’s easy to see why one would want to transition into a cybersecurity career. An entry-level cybersecurity certification can help you enter the field and show potential employers that you have the required training, skills, and experience. Even without an IT background, you have some excellent options. Nevertheless, before delving into your options, here are some cybersecurity basics you need to know.

What Is Cybersecurity? Why Is It Important?

Cybersecurity is the defense of internet-connected devices and services against constant threats in today’s connected world. Through cyber-attacks, threat actors such as hackers, cybercriminals, spammers, and identity thieves attempt to access, steal, or destroy sensitive information, and cybersecurity professionals apply defensive measures to neutralize the threats. Cybersecurity is important because one single data breach can lead to disastrous consequences.

Industry analysts point to the need for more cybersecurity professionals. An overwhelming majority of businesses (68%) say that cybersecurity skills shortages put them at increased risk, while almost half (54%) say they have trouble attracting and retaining talent (Fortinet, 2023).

Companies everywhere are now hiring for more cybersecurity positions, including some entry-level positions, to help close the skill gap. This makes it an excellent time to move into the cybersecurity field, which brings us to the question—can you start a career in cybersecurity without a technical background? Read on to find out.

How Can Career Switchers and Beginners from a Non-IT Background Get Started in Cybersecurity?

You can be considered for a cybersecurity job, even without an IT background—that’s good news if you’re new to the workforce or are looking to switch careers. You need to ensure you’re suited to a cybersecurity career and take the right steps to enter the field.

You may have developed some skills in other jobs, such as soft skills. For example, being a problem solver. Most aspects of cybersecurity roles require strong problem-solving skills. The same can be said for attention to detail, persistence, and teamwork. Employers value these and similar attributes, like the ability to communicate effectively and clearly. If you’ve got some or all of these soft skills, your next step should be to obtain a certification.

Certifications can enhance your professional credibility and employment prospects (Uche, 2024). It’s just a matter of reviewing the best entry-level cybersecurity certifications and finding the one right for you. Since cybersecurity is a vast field, the best certification courses are the ones that are comprehensive.

What Are the Prerequisites for an Entry-Level Cybersecurity Certification?

Entry-level cybersecurity certification courses are perfect for those without IT experience and a limited technical background. With the best cyber security certifications for beginners, there are no specific prerequisites, and no coding or programming experience is needed. The best entry-level cybersecurity certifications teach you everything you need to know, from introductory concepts to more advanced techniques. Of course, having some experience or knowledge in IT, networking, or other fields related to cybersecurity can be advantageous in the program. It will also help if you’re familiar with the basic information security concepts, like authentication,  authorization, and encryption. However, you don’t need any professional experience to take an entry-level course.

How the C|CT Helps You Gain Foundational Knowledge in Cybersecurity

Without an IT background, your best bet for entering a cybersecurity career is finding the right certification program. A good entry-level cybersecurity certification can help demonstrate your credibility when you apply for your first job. EC-Council’s Certified Cybersecurity Technician (C|CT) course is among the best cybersecurity certifications for beginners because it develops foundational skills across multiple domains. The C|CT course contents cover key concepts like penetration testing, ethical hacking, network troubleshooting, traffic analysis, digital forensics, and log monitoring, among others, which prepares you for multiple cybersecurity roles.

A big part of what makes the C|CT the best cybersecurity certification for beginners is EC-Council’s Cyber Range, a simulated environment that provides practical, real-world experience. The C|CT course features 85 labs on the Cyber Range. Along with gaining theoretical knowledge, you also get hands-on experience through Capture the Flag (CTF) style critical thinking challenges. Considering the theoretical knowledge and hands-on experience it imparts, the C|CT program gives you more than any entry-level cybersecurity certification.

You may visit the C|CT course page to view the program details and apply directly. As an added advantage, you can leverage the C|CT scholarship to access the course materials at no cost. EC-Council has pledged $7 million in scholarship funds to help train more cybersecurity technicians. The normal retail price for the C|CT is $999, but with a scholarship, you only have to pay $199 for exam proctoring and technology fees. That means you can earn the best cybersecurity certification for beginners at a fraction of the cost.

Earning C|CT credentials is a great way to kickstart your cybersecurity career because it prepares you for many job roles. With your certification, you can become a cybersecurity technician, ethical hacker, network administrator, IT and networking support specialist, security analyst, and many more. Visit the C|CT course page to learn more about the premier entry-level cybersecurity certification.


Fortinet. (2023). 2023 Cybersecurity Skills Gap. https://www.fortinet.com/content/dam/fortinet/assets/reports/2023-cybersecurity-skills-gap-report.pdf

Glassdoor. (2024, February 21). How Much Does Cyber Security Make? https://www.glassdoor.com/Salaries/cyber-security-salary-SRCH_KO0,14.htm

Uche, N. (2024, January 01). How To Get A Job In Cybersecurity: Cybersecurity Job Requirements. Forbes. https://www.forbes.com/advisor/education/it-and-tech/entry-level-cyber-security-jobs-guide/

U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. (2023, September 06). OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK: Information Security Analysts. https://www.bls.gov/ooh/computer-and-information-technology/information-security-analysts.htm

About the Author

Leaman Crews is a former newspaper reporter, publisher, and editor with over 25 years of professional writing experience. He is also a former I.T. director specializing in writing about tech in an enjoyable way.

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