How to Transition From Software Development to Cybersecurity

Your experience as a software developer has given you the skills that employers of cybersecurity pros are looking for. See what cybersecurity career paths may be available to you and how the skills you already have can get you there.

Software Development to CybersecurityA career as a software developer can be very exciting – from building apps that your friends and family use daily to developing systems that run devices and control networks. While this is a great career path, did you know that all the experience you have in software development can smoothly transition you into a cybersecurity career?

If you currently work in networking, software development, systems engineering, financial and risk analysis, IT support or security intelligence, you’re in luck because CyberSeek has outlined cybersecurity career pathways that begin with these roles, called feeder roles. They have skills that overlap with those needed by cybersecurity pros.

Developer to Cybersecurity: The Skills You Need

Your experience in software development gives you certain tech skills that can help you begin a career in cybersecurity, because cybersecurity requires skills from many other facets of IT.

In the United States, there are currently over 1.4 million open jobs in the developer feeder (yes, you read that right!) that request the following cybersecurity skills from potential software developer candidates:




Information systems

Software development



Information assurance

Software engineering

Security operations


Information security


The general skills are all skills that you should make sure potential employers know you have, as they are the top-requested skills in this category. The above listed cybersecurity skills are particular skills that software development professionals should add to their skill set to help improve your chances of landing a new cybersecurity job.

How to Learn These Skills

CompTIA certifications cover the skills you need to move from software development to cybersecurity, and each certification has a full suite of training products so you can tailor your studying to how you learn best.

If you’re not sure which certification is right for you, take a look at the CompTIA Cybersecurity Career Pathway. CompTIA Security+ validates the baseline skills needed to perform core security functions, and CompTIA Cybersecurity Analyst (CySA+) and CompTIA PenTest+ cover the intermediate skills needed for defensive and offensive cybersecurity, respectively. Once you have some experience under your belt, CompTIA Linux+ is the perfect complement to your cybersecurity skills.

Once you choose which certification is right for you, download the exam objectives to see what’s covered and then select your training solution. You can take a class, like CompTIA Live Online Training, or self-study with CertMaster eLearning solutions.

CertMaster Learn

CertMaster Learn is a self-paced, comprehensive online learning experience that helps you gain the knowledge and practical skills necessary to be successful on your CompTIA certification exam, and in your IT career. CertMaster Learn helps you stay on track with your studies, while robust analytics bring awareness of strengths and weaknesses.

CertMaster Labs

CertMaster Labs make it easy for you to practice and apply your skills in real workplace scenarios in preparation for the certification exam. All lab activities use real equipment and software, are based on scenarios found in the workplace and align with CompTIA exam objectives.

CompTIA now offers integrated Learn + Labs for most CompTIA certifications, giving you a streamlined learning experience. Learn more here.

Developer to Cybersecurity: The Education You Need

According to CyberSeek, the following educational requirements represents the percentage of online job listings requiring either less than a bachelor’s degree, a bachelor’s degree or a graduate degree:

  • 6% do not require a bachelor’s degree
  • 72% require a bachelor’s degree
  • 22% require a graduate degree

Most of these software developer job roles require some type of formal education and IT pros should keep this in mind when searching for a new job.

Learn About the Other CyberSeek Pathways and Feeder Roles

Systems engineer


Security intelligence

Financial and risk analysis

IT support

Developer to Cybersecurity: The Jobs You Could Get

The software developer job roles that transition well into a cybersecurity role are more mid-level and advanced-level job roles, as seen below.

Developer to cybersecurity
  • Cybersecurity engineer: Cybersecurity engineers work to build and maintain a system that’s safe against cyberattacks.
  • Penetration tester: Pen testers think like a bad guy, the end goal is to help organizations improve their security practices to prevent theft and damage.
  • Cybersecurity analyst: A cybersecurity analyst detects cyber threats and then implements changes to protect an organization.
  • Cybersecurity architect: A security architect develops and maintains the security of an organization’s network.

The average salary among these job roles is $109,250. This data from CyberSeek is valuable during your job search to ensure you are being offered a fair wage.

Developer to Cybersecurity: The Certifications You Need

CompTIA Certifications

According to CyberSeek, of the 1,400,000+ job openings in the software developer feeder role, the following certifications are most commonly requested by IT employers.

  • CompTIA Security+: Validates the baseline skills necessary to perform core security functions and pursue an IT security career.

Other Certifications

  • IT Infrastructure Library (ITIL) Certification
  • Certified Information Systems Security Professional (CISSP)

Transitioning to a cybersecurity career from software development isn’t a huge stretch. Many of the skills you already have can set you up for success in cybersecurity. With its detailed, actionable data about supply and demand in the cybersecurity job market, CyberSeek is a great resource to help you learn what skills and certifications are necessary for the cybersecurity job of your dreams.

Check out the CompTIA Cybersecurity Career Pathway to see how CompTIA certifications can help you get into cybersecurity and advance your cybersecurity career.

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