Last updated on November 18th, 2023.
The field of cybersecurity has grown a lot in recent years. It has become a field where you can get a job relatively easily after only a few months or a couple years of schooling. You can get a job in cybersecurity after completing some certifications which can take you as little as a few months.
This has massively contributed to the growth of cybersecurity as more and more people decide to go into cybersecurity as opposed to going to college for four years to get a degree in another field. The demand for cybersecurity certification courses has also led to the growth of online programs.
The 10 Best Online CyberSecurity Certifications online are from:
- Harvard University
- Northwestern University
- Institute for Management Development (IMD)
- University of Cape Town
- Udacity CyberSecurity
- Harvard University
- Udacity’s Security Analyst
- Northwestern University
- University of London
If you are interested in taking one of these online cybersecurity certification courses, then you should continue reading to find more detailed information on each of them!
Is a Certificate in Cyber security worth it?
You may be wondering whether it is even worth your time to get a certificate in cybersecurity. It must be said that only having a certification on your resume might not be enough to get you your dream job in cybersecurity right away.
However, when deciding whether a certification is right for you, you should consider the following advantages of getting a certification in cybersecurity. Having certifications in cybersecurity can help you stand out among other applicants for a job you want.
Employers often value certifications in this field pretty highly, so although it might not get you the job on its own, it will certainly help as a supplement on your resume. Also, having certifications in cybersecurity can help you to negotiate a pay raise or put you on track for a promotion.
Cybersecurity is a very large and expanding field. While you will be able to get some jobs in cybersecurity without a college degree, there are a lot of higher paying jobs that will still require a Bachelor’s degree. If you are looking to add something to your resume other than your degree, a certification can be a great way to boost your resume.
Regardless of whether you are trying to go into cybersecurity without a degree or after getting your degree, there will certainly be a benefit to you if you have a certification in cyber security
Which certificate course is best for cyber security?
Now that you have decided to take a certification course, it is time to find the right certification for you. There are many options when it comes to cybersecurity certifications. There are many colleges and universities that offer online certification courses as well as private companies which can make it difficult to find the best one.
However, this list will give you some information on some of the best courses available online for you to get a certification in cyber security. Including a certification course from Harvard University which is considered by many to be the best online course available.
How do I become cyber security certified?
In order to become certified in cyber security you will need to complete a certification course. You can complete a certification course at many colleges and universities on campus, or you can complete the courses online.
After you complete your certification course you will receive a certificate that shows that you completed the course. If you complete the course through a university you will receive a certificate that shows your completion of the course from the university which may look better on your resume.
Many courses are only a few months long which makes it much easier to become certified. Many universities and colleges offer ten month long courses that will get you cyber security certified.
The 10 Best Online Cyber Security Certifications
Now that you know the benefits of getting a certification in cyber security, and what you need to do in order to get certified, it is time to finally pick a certification course.
Below are the five best online cyber security certification courses that you can take in order to get cyber security certified. Most of these courses are pretty short which makes them even more worth it for many people.
With that being said, here are the 5 best online cyber security certifications.
1. Harvard’s Cybersecurity: Managing Risk in the Information Age
The first course on the list is Harvard’s cybersecurity certification course. This is a great course for people that are serious about cybersecurity to take. If you are someone who isn’t sure that they will use this certificate in their career, then you might want to stay away from this course.
This course has a price of $2,900. Although that may sound like a lot of money for an online course, you will receive a certification in cybersecurity from Harvard University at the end of the course. When you compare the price of this course to the price of tuition at Harvard you will realize that this course isn’t that expensive for the value you will receive.
This course is only 8 weeks long which makes it a great option for people looking to get certified in a short amount of time. This course recommends that you spend anywhere from 8-11 hours on it every week. However, a great thing about this course is that it is self-paced, so you might finish this course earlier than 8 weeks if you choose to put more hours into it than the recommended amount.
This course focuses on teaching its students how to properly manage risks that are involved in cybersecurity. During the course of the 8 weeks you will learn skills such as performing a vulnerability assessment, how to solve web and network vulnerabilities, and explore some strategies to respond to cyberattacks.
This course is great for people that work as cybersecurity analysts, information security managers, or other jobs in security administration. This course gives these people the knowledge and skills needed to build confidence when it comes to assessing and dealing with cybersecurity risks.
If you are someone that works in one of the jobs mentioned above or are looking to get a job in one of those careers, this course is a great way to gain or maintain an understanding of developments in cybersecurity attacks in order to protect the organization you work for.
2. Northwestern’s Cybersecurity Leadership
As the name suggests, this course focuses on a different aspect of cybersecurity as the previous course. This course is more focused on implementing strategies within your organization to protect digital information as opposed to the focus of the previous course which was assessing and dealing with risk.
This course has a price of $2,500. It is cheaper than the previous course, but it is also from a less prestigious university. It is important to consider the impact that the name of the university you get your certificate from will have on your resume.
However, that doesn’t mean that this course by the University of Northwestern McCormick’s School of Engineering isn’t a great option. The truth is that as mentioned earlier both of these courses focus on different topics. If you were only going to pick one certificate to do it will probably be better for your resume to the Harvard’s course, but that doesn’t mean that you can only complete that course.
The great thing about online certifications is that you can take multiple certification courses on different topics that will greatly boost your resume.
This course has an expected duration of 6 weeks, but you can complete it sooner than that if you choose to spend more than the recommended 7-9 hours per week on the course. This course focuses on teaching cybersecurity professionals how to carry out initiatives to improve cybersecurity in their organizations.
During the duration of this course you will take a look at the laws, policies, and regulations that are related to cybersecurity. By doing this you will be able to create a strategy to impact the cybersecurity of the organization you work for.
Employers really like people that take on leadership roles, and taking a certificate on cybersecurity leadership is a great way to show them that you are one of those people.
Due to the nature of this course it is great for anyone in a management position in cybersecurity, but it is also good for people aspiring to reach a management position in their organization.
3. IMD’s Cybersecurity for Managers
The next course on the list is the Institute for Management Development’s cybersecurity for managers course. However, despite what the name of the course may suggest, this course has lots of things to offer even for those that aren’t aspiring to be cybersecurity managers or already are.
The course expands on some of the basic cybersecurity concepts and practices. It also explores how to carry out senior level planning when it comes to cybersecurity. This course has a price tag of $2,000, and it only lasts about 5 weeks.
Similarly to the other courses on the list you can finish this course sooner than the expected 5 weeks if you choose to spend more than the recommended 6-8 hours per week. This course is intended to give you some tools to navigate the cybersecurity landscape that currently exists and how to adapt to changes in the future.
Some of the things that you will learn over the length of the course include how to build on existing security systems your organization already has in place, and evaluate whether your organization is prepared for the future of cybersecurity. You will also create an action plan to prepare and respond to threats in cybersecurity.
4. University of Cape Town’s Fundamentals of Cybersecurity
This course focuses on some of the most basic concepts in cybersecurity. Although it may not be your top choice of the courses on this list it has several advantages that make it worth considering.
For starters, this certification course only costs $1,000 which makes it the cheapest course out of the ones on this list. However, despite being the cheapest this course is 8 weeks long. The low price does not mean that you will not get a quality instruction during the length of the course.
This is a self-paced course and it is recommended that you spend around 7-10 hours on it every week. However, like with any of the other courses on the list you can finish it before the 8 weeks by spending more time working on it every week.
This is a great entry level course that will help you gain a better understanding of the fundamental concepts of cybersecurity. People take this course at all levels in cybersecurity from entry level employees to management.
If you are looking for a certification course to show your understanding of the fundamental concepts of cybersecurity, you should certainly consider taking this course.
5. Udacity Introduction to Cybersecurity
The last course on this list is Udacity’s introduction to cybersecurity certification course. This course is different from all of the others on this list since it is not affiliated with a university. Instead, this course is held by the Udacity website which has many courses on different topics.
This is a course designed to take about 16 weeks when spending around 10 hours per week working on it. However, this course is self-paced, so you can finish it sooner by spending more time on it.
This course focuses on several different topics in cybersecurity such as: cybersecurity foundations, defending and securing systems, how to respond to threats and vulnerabilities, and how to comply with laws and regulations.
The price of this course is $1,500 which makes it one of the cheapest courses on this list. Despite not being certified by a university at the end of the course, it is still worth considering taking this course to gain some foundational understanding if you don’t already have it.
6. Harvard's Cybersecurity
First on the list is Harvard’s Cybersecurity: Managing Risk in the Information Age. Excluding orientation, this course takes about eight weeks to complete if done consistently. It costs $2,900 for access to the course.
- Provides education on how to identify risk
- Helps students develop ways to defend against attacks
- Teaches information on a vulnerability assessment
These can help a company tremendously.
If you want a full knowledge of how to defend a company against cyber threats, this course is excellent for you. You will get a full view of what it takes to set up a defense on the internet today.
7. Udacity’s Security Analyst Course
Udacity’s Security Analyst Course is also another excellent option. It takes about four months to complete and is free if you have a Udacity subscription. They recommend that you understand Python, SQL, and security fundamentals.
- Teaches how to identify security risks and defend against them
- Provides the ability to assess a risk level
- Ways to log and report incidents that happen
These are all necessary for a cybersecurity individual to know.
This course is a little more advanced. If you have experience in code and security, Udacity’s course is an excellent one for you.
8. Coursera’s IBM Cybersecurity Analyst Professional Certificate
Next is Coursera’s IBM Cybersecurity Analyst Professional Certificate. This course is offered by IBM and is free with a Coursera subscription. It takes about eight months to complete.
- Provides an applied learning project
- Allows learners to take on job-ready skills
- Grows a community for better learning
You’ll feel ready for the work environment after this class.
If you want to learn cybersecurity from a professional tech company, this class is an excellent choice. It’s a little more advanced than the other classes on this list.
9. Northwestern's Cybersecurity Leadership Course
Northwestern offers Cybersecurity Leadership Course is the next choice on this list. It’s a six-week program without orientation, and it will cost you $2,500 to enroll in the class.
- Provides cybersecurity strategies
- Gives valuable insight and knowledge
- Prepares young professionals for the work world
You’ll have a certificate by the time the class is over.
If you want to be a leader in the cybersecurity world, this course is for you. You will learn everything you need to know about what it takes to be a leader in securing data.
10. University of London's Information Security: Context and Introduction
Last up is the University of London’s Information Security: Context and Introduction. This course is the shortest on the list. It only takes twenty-four hours to complete and is free if you have a Coursera subscription. It’s offered by the University of London.
- Provides a basic introduction to cybersecurity
- Gives appreciation for the subject
You’ll feel ready when all is said and done.
If you want a short class that goes over all the basics, this class is the best choice for you. It will dive into everything you need to succeed.
There are many benefits to getting a certification in cybersecurity. It’s a launch point for learning cyber security fundamentals and building a solid career. Having several certifications in this field can certainly make you stand out among other applicants when it comes to getting a job or getting a promotion.
Any of the courses mentioned above are worth it for you to consider. They all offer some great lessons and advantages. If you can afford to do so, you should even consider taking multiple of the courses on the list above.