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Published: February 7, 2023

Top Skills to Look For When Hiring Information Security Professionals

By Annie articles

Considerations when hiring infosec experts

According to Cybersecurity Ventures, worldwide spending on information security products and services will approach $1.75 trillion between 2021 and 2025, with businesses reporting an average cost of $4.24 million per data breach.

As organizations become more reliant on technology, the demand for competent information security professionals grows. To remain ahead of the newest cyberattacks and security breaches, it’s critical to have compliance experts in place who possess the important skills required.

While soft skills, such as communication skills and problem-solving ability may be broadly applicable in your business; technical skills, compliance and regulatory knowledge, risk management and assessment skills may be harder to assess without the proper knowledge.

We’ll help you by breaking each category down so you know what to look for when hiring an information security professional.

Technical Skills

Information security professional needs to have a comprehensive technical understanding of the technology and processes needed to secure an organization’s data. They must be able to analyze, design and implement systems that protect information from unauthorized access while ensuring availability when necessary.

Information security professionals often have bachelor’s degrees or higher in fields such as computer science, computer engineering, system administration, electrical engineering, and application security.

Some may also have degrees in fields such as mathematics, physics, or Management Information Systems (MIS). Additionally, many information security professionals have certifications such as Certified Information Systems Security Professional (CISSP) or Certified Information Systems Auditor (CISA).

Additional skills include:

Intrusion Detection

A large part of the job of an information security analyst is to monitor network activity for potential attacks. Knowing how to leverage penetration testing, firewalls, intrusion detection, and security systems allows information security experts to detect suspicious behavior or security violations rapidly, before the damage is done.

Network Security Control

Many information security threats occur across a network of linked devices. The same information systems that enable businesses to communicate can also lead to IT security flaws. Information security analysts must understand wired and wireless networks and how to secure them to keep a business safe.

Operating Systems

Security threats occur on both PCs and mobile devices throughout all operating systems. Therefore, a solid InfoSec career is based on a thorough understanding of computer systems like macOS, Microsoft Windows, Linux, iOS, and Android and their main vulnerabilities.

Incident Response

While prevention is the objective of cybersecurity, responding fast to security events is vital to minimizing harm and cost. Effective security incident management requires knowledge of your organization’s incident response plan and digital forensics and malware analysis capabilities.

Cloud Environment

Professionals with cloud experience are in-demand as more organizations migrate to cloud environments and cloud computing solutions. According to GIAC Certifications, cloud security expertise might increase pay by more than $15,000. As a result, cloud security talent will be in high demand over the next four years, making it one of the most valuable pieces of expertise for your business.


Security engineering issues are frequently found within apps. To ensure that applications are safe from the outset, more and more companies are including security in their Software Development and Operations (DevOps) phases.

Development, Security, and Operations (DevSecOps), which was long thought to be the domain of internal technical communities, has grown into a business operation. The shift is essential, and its ramifications may be seen in business-led quick delivery cycles that balance revenue and risk concerns.

We are seeing the introduction of balanced development automation solutions in today’s DevSecOps tool ecosystem that incorporate compliance into DevSecOps and enable real-time risk assessment capabilities that assist in establishing a much-needed balance between security and speed.

Cyber Threat Knowledge

“Know thy enemy.” General Sun Tzu may not have been referring to cybercriminals, but by staying current on the threat landscape, information security analysts can remain vigilant and evolve their initiatives to incorporate emerging threats.

Compliance and Regulatory Knowledge

By understanding compliance and regulatory requirements, information security professionals can ensure their companies comply with applicable laws, regulations, and standards. They also have the responsibility to protect data and minimize risk by adhering to industry best practices.

Thus, having up-to-date knowledge of applicable laws, regulations, and standards allows information security professionals to stay ahead of any changes that may occur in their space overtime.

Naturally, the particular frameworks and cybersecurity certifications you implement will differ based on your organization and industry, but some of the most frequently employed information security frameworks include:

  • National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) 800-53
  • System and Organization Controls 2 (SOC 2)
  • International Organization for Standardization (ISO) 27001
  • Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS)
  • Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA)
  • Federal Information Security Management Act (FISMA)

Organizations may also require candidates to be knowledgeable about the different data privacy standards, whether based on the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) of the European Union or the California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA).

Risk Management and Assessment

Having expertise in risk management and assessment is essential for information security professionals as it allows them to identify, assess, analyze and manage risks associated with their organization’s activities. This process helps to provide an overall view of the security landscape, allowing the security professional to detect potential weak points or vulnerabilities that could be exploited by malicious actors.

In addition, the risk assessment process can develop controls and countermeasures that are tailored to the organization’s specific needs. By having a comprehensive understanding of risk management processes, information security professionals can proactively mitigate threats and ensure that their organization is better prepared for any potential incidents.

Why You Should Hire an Information Security Expert

Cybercriminals will attack your business whether you are a small company or a Fortune 500 multinational. Therefore, it is critical to avoid emerging risks to prevent financial and reputational implications.

Since every industry has data, every sector is vulnerable. They may not want your information but want access to your customer’s data or Personally Identifying Information (PII). A hacker can subsequently use this information to demand a ransom payment from you.

A data breach may cost your company hundreds of thousands, if not millions, of dollars. In addition, you may need to invest in all new systems, computers, and servers and relocate to the cloud in some circumstances.

Information security experts can offer detailed knowledge and experience that may not be accessible in-house. They may aid in developing overall security plans, identify particular areas of vulnerability, and provide recommendations on best practices for securing sensitive data.

Furthermore, if necessary, the expert may serve as a consultant throughout the process, giving valuable insights while ensuring duties are executed accurately and effectively. Organizations may be sure that they will receive accurate advice and up-to-date solutions adapted to their specific needs if they seek assistance from a qualified expert with a background in the field.

TalPoint Information Security Experts Are Here To Support You

Finding the right match for your company’s needs may be a tiresome task, and because of the number of technical requirements, it puts an extra burden on your HR team. However, with TalPoint, hiring compliance experts is simple.

TalPoint is an expert marketplace that connects information security, privacy, risk, and compliance experts to businesses needing their expertise. When you work with us, you gain access to our private network of vetted subject-matter experts with the qualifications necessary to deliver outcomes across a wide range of business-critical projects quickly and efficiently. 

We can help you determine the path needed to achieve your desired program outcome and match you with an expert based on your unique needs.

Reach out today to set up a time to chat with us about your needs.

Our large and diverse network of experts is here to help...

Charles M.


Charlies is a 14 year cyber security expert. He started his career in the U.S. armed forces and then transitioned into commercial roles. A security engineer by training, he's well-versed in tool deployment and administration.

Ellen K.

GRC Expert

Ellen bring a decade of GRC expertise to the TalPoint community. She's knowledgeable on a variety of frameworks and employs a methodical approach to compliance. She's available for needs assessments, gap assessments, internal audits, and for certain frameworks running independent 3rd party audits.

Zachary C.

Founder and CRO

Zachary bring a 20+ year career in risk management to the TalPoint community. He's worked across healthcare, finance, and supply chain manufacturing. His broad experience offers both a holistic view of risk as well as a common sense approach to risk management.