In order to become an IT Security Specialist, you will need to understand how networks work. Once you have an understanding of networking, you can then look into a specializations such as Network Security or CyberSecurity.
First, you need some formal education in IT Networking. I would recommend that you do some research to find out which community colleges in your area offer programs in IT Networking. The Cisco Network Academy (www.netacad.com) is a great place to get started learning for a networking career. Training through the Cisco Network Academy is how I got started in IT Networking.
Next, you should look into the IT Certifications that will be required in order to secure a job in IT Security. Start with CCNA Routing & Switching, then move on to security related certifications such as CompTIA Security+. Why? Because most employers are looking to hire individuals who have demonstrated the required competency in these subject areas by acquiring the certifications. Experience and certifications are important in the IT field. You can find Cisco certification information here: https://www.cisco.com/c/en/us/training-events/training-certifications/certifications.html
Nisha recommends the following next steps:
- Research community college programs in IT Networking
- Research IT certifications pathways