From cybersecurity to IT security; the demand for security professionals is at its peak like never before. Here are some certifications that will help you polish your skills.
The majority of businesses utilize multiple computer networks in their operations. These businesses rely on these networks functioning correctly and smoothly. The network administrator’s main job is to ensure this.
You may have heard the term “network administrator” being used interchangeably with “systems administrator.” In smaller companies, both roles can be performed by the same person. But these positions take on significantly different responsibilities in larger companies.
Systems administrators focus primarily on individual computers and devices. Network administrators focus on the interconnection of such computers in the company. However, in this article, we won’t distinguish between the two as, most of the time, network administrators and system administrators have coinciding responsibilities.
More specifically, network administrators perform the following tasks:
- Set up and configure the company’s local area networks (LAN) and wide-area networks (WAN).
- Manage the hardware and software necessary for the company’s needs.
- Manage the maintenance and replacement of all hardware and software.
- Secure the systems and network of the company.
- Troubleshoot issues as and when they come up.
- Improve the overall performance of each machine and the network as a whole.
- Train the company’s staff on the best practices for securely utilizing the machines and accessing the network.
Network administrators are highly in demand. Those already employed can expect more lucrative career opportunities and pay bumps. Therefore, it’s important to know how to succeed in such roles so you can make the most of them.
The following list details some of the most recommended courses and certifications.
Certifications and courses relevant to network administrators
This list is subdivided based on the provider.
Cato Networks Certification
SASE Expert Course and Certification: Level 1
First off, what is SASE? It’s a relatively new network architecture. It is the convergence of both network and security services. It simplifies operations while also increasing the security of a network. It’s a cloud-based architecture that allows a multi-point presence.
The SASE Level 1 certification is provided by Cato Networks – the world’s first SASE platform. It teaches you the fundamentals of SASE and how to incorporate it into your network. This course is highly recommended because Cato Cloud is the foremost implementation of this architecture.
CompTIA A+ Certification
The CompTIA A+ certification is an entry-level certification meant to certify fundamental skills for computer professionals. The important skills it certifies are installation, maintenance, configuration, and troubleshooting of personal computers.
This certification is acquired by passing a couple of exams covering topics such as hardware, networking, security, Windows, and troubleshooting.
CompTIA Network+ Certification
The CompTIA Network+ certification is a very relevant certificate for a network administrator or someone wanting to be a network administrator. It certifies that the candidate has broad knowledge and skills related to networking.
This certification isn’t platform-specific. What you learn here can be applied to a variety of network platforms used by organizations. It covers both wired and wireless networks (it’s the only one in the industry to do so).
The skills certified include managing, configuring, troubleshooting, and securing wired and wireless networks.
CompTIA Security+ Certification
The CompTIA Security+ certification validates skills related to security. This certification vouches that the recipient has sufficient capability in handling threats and other vulnerabilities in a system.
The topics covered include analysis of threats and vulnerabilities, management and control of user access, risk management, technologies/tools to troubleshoot and deploy mobile devices securely, cryptography, and secure system design/architecture.
The CompTIA Linux+ certification is for professionals handling Linux-based systems, including servers and cloud-based platforms. It covers topics related to the command line, various Linux distros, the installation of Linux in computers, and updating of systems and connecting them to the network.
The Cisco Certified Network Associate (CCNA) exam tests how much one knows about networking fundamentals. It covers topics such as IP connectivity, security, automation, etc. To prepare for this examination, the candidate can take the Implementation and Administering Cisco Solutions course.
The Cisco Certified Network Professional (CCNP) exam comes after the CCNA exam. Only those with at least one year of IT experience can take it. It’s not a single type of exam but a collection of domain-specific certifications and courses, including remote access, advanced routing, multi-layer switching, and scalable internet networks.
MTA Networking Fundamentals
This course (and the exam) validate one’s knowledge and skills related to networking technologies using Microsoft tools. It has no prerequisites as it’s an entry point for other courses.
This is a fundamental-level course that covers basic topics like LAN and WAN, wired and wireless networks, internet protocol, implementation of TCP/IP in the command line, infrastructures, and security.
MTA Security Fundamentals
MTA Security Fundamentals is another entry-level course from Microsoft. It covers topics such as understanding security layers, authentication/authorization, security policies, network security, and server and client protection.