Security engineers and security analysts are critical for managing data breaches in an organization. Both of these positions are necessary and sound somewhat similar. But, despite the overlap  between these two cybersecurity roles, there are clear distinctions that anyone aspiring to start a career in information and computer security should consider.

Read on to know how these two cybersecurity roles differ from each other in their responsibilities, skills and the battles they deal with.

Security Engineer vs Security Analyst

What Do Security Engineers Do?

Security engineers are responsible for continuously analyzing cybersecurity for an organization and searching for vulnerabilities. They are experts in data protection basics and network and system infrastructure design principles.

According to Payscale, security engineers are responsible for:

  • Creating and executing strategies to secure and protect networks and data resources
  • Planing computer and network security upgrades and testing hardware and software related to the upgrade
  • Managing technical problems related to applications and production equipment
  • Addressing intrusions using expertise in computer forensics
  • Foreseeing future problem areas by monitoring workflows and network traffic patterns

 A Security Engineer’s Skill Set 

Security engineers are required to have the following skills: 

  • Operational vulnerability analysis 
  • Incident response and analysis
  • Red team and/or pen testing experience
  • Real time network analysis
  • Digital forensics

Additionally, companies looking to hire security engineers often look for candidates with experience participating in hackathon, and cybersecurity competitions, and those who have completed cybersecurity-related projects. 

What Do Security Analysts Do?

Security analysts work with stakeholders across the organization to gain a thorough understanding of an organization’s security requirements. They also know everything about a company’s various security initiatives. More often than not, a role as a security analyst is an entry-level position focusing on trend analysis, threat detection and remediation.

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the responsibilities of a cybersecurity analyst includes:

  • Monitor the networks and computer systems of their organization to detect, protect, and investigate any security threats
  • Protect any sensitive information by installing softwares like firewalls and data encryption programs
  • Stay abreast with new cyber technologies and apply those in the company’s security standards and best practices
  • Assist team members with security products and processes

A Security Analyst’s Skill Set

Security analysts are required to have the following skills::

  • Understanding of networking protocols (TCP/IP, HTTP, FTP, etc)
  • Networking concepts (Packets, Ports, Routing, DNS, etc.)
  • Security technologies (Firewalls, IDS/IPS, Proxies, EDR/EPP, etc)

Kick Off Your Career in Cybersecurity

If you want to lay the foundation for a career in cybersecurity then now is the time. Check out our School of Cybersecurity today. 

You can also enroll yourself in specialized Nanodegree programs — Security Analyst and Security Engineer — to get the right skills in these fields.

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