Certificate in Cybersecurity Defense

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Course Dates

STARTS ON

TBD

Course Duration

DURATION

8 weeks, online
15–⁠20 hours per week

Course Duration

Learn The Essentials of Defensive Cybersecurity With MIT xPRO

Cyberattacks are on the rise globally and will only increase in frequency, complexity, and cost as technology proliferates. At the same time, a recent report by CyberEdge found that approximately 87% of organizations don’t have the skilled cybersecurity personnel needed to address these growing threats.

With MIT xPRO's Certificate in Cybersecurity Defense, you can begin or continue your career journey in cybersecurity and help fill this critical gap in expertise. As a participant in this 8-week course, you’ll get a comprehensive introduction to defensive cybersecurity that’s focused on core concepts such as cryptography, security operations center (SOC), incident response (IR), secure system and network administration, and cloud security. You’ll learn the fundamentals of secure communication between computer systems and organizations and how to identify and respond to cyberattacks. And you’ll be broadening your career opportunities in this rapidly expanding field as you work toward entry-level positions such as SOC analyst.

Don't miss your chance to enhance your existing IT expertise or accelerate your career with in-demand cybersecurity skills.

USD 85,466

Average annual salary for an SOC analyst

Source: ZipRecruiter

USD 3.86 million

The average cost of a single data breach

Source: Dice.com

91%

The percentage of organizations boosting their cybersecurity budgets in 2021 due to increased threats

Source: IDG Research Services survey 2021

Who Is This Program For?

This program is a career accelerator for those who want to learn the fundamentals of defensive cybersecurity. It is ideal for:

  • Career launchers: Early career professionals who have an interest in cybersecurity, IT professionals, network engineers, systems administrators, and SOC analysts who want to gain new skills in cybersecurity and risk management as well as add value to their organization by strengthening defenses against cyberattacks.
  • Career builders: IT project and engineering managers who want to improve their organizations' preparedness for and response against cyberattacks as well as advance their careers as leaders in cybersecurity strategies.
  • Career switchers: Midcareer or later career IT professionals who want to switch to cybersecurity as a specialty to recharge their careers and take advantage of the demand for cybersecurity talent in areas such as marketing, sales, human resources, and operations.

Key Takeaways

Build a foundation

  • Explore secure communications between computer systems and organizations.
  • Learn how attacks are identified and how defensive cybersecurity responses are established.
  • Identify key components and sequences of SOC and IR frameworks.

Expand your knowledge

  • Analyze data management in the cloud and apply the concepts to personal experiences.
  • Evaluate cybersecurity processes.
  • Explore threats and vulnerabilities, and evaluate responses to each.

Apply your learning

  • Apply cybersecurity concepts to real organizations and scenarios.
  • Employ real-world insights from current cybersecurity professionals.
  • Use the NIST model to understand and explain risk management.

Program Highlights

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A certificate from MIT xPRO that recognizes your skills and success

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Learn about the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), Cloud Security Alliance (CSA), and Cloud Controls Matrix (CCM) frameworks as well as the MITRE ATT&CK® knowledge base

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Market-ready cybersecurity skills in a high-growth market

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Case studies on the connections between IR and criminal digital forensics and disaster recovery

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Insights and case studies from renowned MIT faculty

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Assignments and a final project to demonstrate an understanding of defensive cybersecurity

Program Topics

Week 1:

Introduction to Defensive Cybersecurity

Gain an understanding of the repercussions of inadequate defensive security strategies. Learn how the NIST model applies to defensive strategy and get a detailed overview of the layers of defense as well as an introduction to cryptography and how it relates to security services.

Week 2:

Cryptography

Get a high-level overview of cryptography concepts, including an introduction to hash functions, message authentication codes (MAC), symmetric key encryption, the relationship between public and shared key encryption, and more.

Week 3:

Security Operations Center

Examine SOC models and their purposes, functions, and services. Understand the differences between reactive and proactive threat detection and research a variety of SOC tools and describe their functions, strengths/weaknesses, and administration.

Week 4:

Incident Response

Identify the key components and sequences of IR and describe the connections between IR and criminal digital forensics and disaster recovery. Explore the real-life challenges organizations face with IR plans and teams to help you be better prepared for a potential IR position.

Week 5:

Secure Systems Administration

Understand the role and responsibilities of systems administrators and how they are able to protect against security issues and confirm that their protection measures are successful.

Week 6:

Secure Network Administration

Dive deeper into the topic of secure network administration, from learning the fundamentals to exploring different types of network filtering.

Week 7:

Cloud Security

Analyze fundamental cloud security concepts and principles and explore the pros and cons of cloud-based services and other cloud service models. Get an introduction to the components of the CSA Cloud Controls Matrix.

Week 8:

Preparing for a Job In Cybersecurity Operations

Consider the job responsibilities of an SOC analyst's role. Learn how VPNs connect the concepts of cryptography and network authentication services and explore security issues that can arise within an organization. You’ll also have an opportunity to use soft and presentation skills through various learning activities during this final week.

Week 1:

Introduction to Defensive Cybersecurity

Gain an understanding of the repercussions of inadequate defensive security strategies. Learn how the NIST model applies to defensive strategy and get a detailed overview of the layers of defense as well as an introduction to cryptography and how it relates to security services.

Week 5:

Secure Systems Administration

Understand the role and responsibilities of systems administrators and how they are able to protect against security issues and confirm that their protection measures are successful.

Week 2:

Cryptography

Get a high-level overview of cryptography concepts, including an introduction to hash functions, message authentication codes (MAC), symmetric key encryption, the relationship between public and shared key encryption, and more.

Week 6:

Secure Network Administration

Dive deeper into the topic of secure network administration, from learning the fundamentals to exploring different types of network filtering.

Week 3:

Security Operations Center

Examine SOC models and their purposes, functions, and services. Understand the differences between reactive and proactive threat detection and research a variety of SOC tools and describe their functions, strengths/weaknesses, and administration.

Week 7:

Cloud Security

Analyze fundamental cloud security concepts and principles and explore the pros and cons of cloud-based services and other cloud service models. Get an introduction to the components of the CSA Cloud Controls Matrix.

Week 4:

Incident Response

Identify the key components and sequences of IR and describe the connections between IR and criminal digital forensics and disaster recovery. Explore the real-life challenges organizations face with IR plans and teams to help you be better prepared for a potential IR position.

Week 8:

Preparing for a Job In Cybersecurity Operations

Consider the job responsibilities of an SOC analyst's role. Learn how VPNs connect the concepts of cryptography and network authentication services and explore security issues that can arise within an organization. You’ll also have an opportunity to use soft and presentation skills through various learning activities during this final week.

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Program Instructors

Faculty Member Keri Pearlson

Keri Pearlson

Executive director of cybersecurity at MIT Sloan (CAMS), formerly the Interdisciplinary Consortium for Improving Critical Infrastructure Cybersecurity at the MIT Sloan School of Management

Dr. Keri Pearlson is the executive director of Cybersecurity at MIT Sloan: Formerly the Interdisciplinary Consortium for Improving Critical Infrastructure Cybersecurity (IC) 3. She has worked in academia and industry, including positions at Babson College, The University of Texas at Austin, Gartner's Research Board, CSC, and AT&T... More info

Faculty Member Nickolai Zeldovich

Nickolai Zeldovich

Professor of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science and a member of the Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory at MIT

Prof. Zeldovich is a professor of electrical engineering and computer science at MIT and a member of the Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory. He received his PhD from Stanford University in 2008. His research interests are in building practical secure systems... More info

Faculty Member

Barbara Johnson

Senior Security Consultant; Security Certification Educator; Lecturer at MIT Sloan School of Management; Education: BSISE, MBA; (ISC)2 Certifications: CISSP and ISSMP; ISACA Certifications: CISA, CISM, CRISC, CDPSE, Business Continuity; Certifications: CBCP and MBCI

Securing information systems is Barbara's purpose, and educating security professionals is her passion. Barbara Johnson is a senior security, audit and compliance management consultant with over 20 years of experience... More info

Faculty Member Rajiv Shridhar

Rajiv Shridhar

Information Security Officer and Director of Research Computing, MIT Sloan School of Management

Rajiv Shridhar is the Information Security Officer and Director of Research Computing at MIT Sloan School of Management. He leads the team that enables the research of MIT Sloan faculty, students and collaborators by providing specialized computing infrastructure, data sets, software tools, support and technology consulting... More info

Faculty Member Una-May O'Reilly

Una-May O'Reilly

Principal Research Scientist and Leader of ALFA Group at MIT-SAIL

Dr. O'Reilly's research group, AnyScale Learning for All, develops new, data-driven analyses of online coding courses, deep learning techniques for program representations, adversarial attacks on machine learning models, model training for adversarial robustness, and cyber hunting tools and cyber arms race models. More info

Guest Speakers

Faculty Member Daniel Gorecki

Daniel Gorecki

Group information security manager and CISO at Ascot Group

Daniel Gorecki is a group information security manager and CISO at Ascot Group. In this role, he manages a global team in information risk management and cyber resiliency for the global organization. Prior to joining Ascot Group, he was the CISO at Aramark and held the CISO and CIO roles at Intercept Pharmaceuticals. Mr. Gorecki maintains certifications for Certified Information Systems Security Professional (CISSP) and Certified Data Privacy Solutions Engineer(CDPSE). He has completed SIM's Regional Leadership Forum for IT Executives and holds a bachelor of engineering in computer engineering from Stony Brook University.

Faculty Member Erica Wilson

Erica Wilson

CISO for Cass Information Systems

Erica Wilson has over 20 years of IT experience, 18 of which are in the field of cybersecurity. Erica currently serves as the CISO for Cass Information Systems. She has responsibility for all aspects of the company’s cybersecurity program; including security strategy, policies & procedures, technologies, and training. In addition, Erica leads all aspects of technology risk management, including compliance with internal and regulatory controls, as well as the Business Continuity Program. Erica also has a passion for STEM education. Throughout her professional career, she has consistently identified ways to influence and encourage others in the community to explore opportunities to work in the field information technology and cybersecurity.

Faculty Member Ion Santotomas

Ion Santotomas

Lead Security Analyst at Schneider Electric

Ion is a diligent senior cybersecurity professional with a strong technical background in systems engineering and infrastructure management. Ion is passionate about both offensive and defensive aspects of cybersecurity and actively participates in events, conferences, and online challenges to sharpen his technical skills and knowledge about the latest trends and attack vectors, to be a better defender.

Certificate

Certificate

Get recognized! Upon successful completion of this program, MIT xPRO grants a certificate of completion to participants. This program is graded as a pass or fail; participants must receive 75% to pass and obtain the certificate of completion.

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After successful completion of the program, your verified digital certificate will be emailed to you, at no additional cost, in the name you used when registering for the program. All certificate images are for illustrative purposes only and may be subject to change at the discretion of MIT.

Registration for this program is done through Emeritus. You can contact us at mit@emeritus.org
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