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Many people want to know how to get into cyber security, but how many thought to start with hacking? Hacking is brought up regularly now, due to tons of security breaches at large companies. There’s also a very popular show about vigilante hackers: Mr. Robot. In this way, hacking is seen as only a negative activity. However, there are lots of ways to be an ethical hacker and learn about cyber security.

Udemy Courses

Udemy is a site where experts in just about any field create courses for the average person to study. Courses are usually around $200, but Udemy often has sales for holidays and other times of the year, and you can get courses for as cheap as $10. I mention this because the courses range from basic to advanced, so even if you’ve never entered the realm of hacking or cyber security, you can find a course that’s suited to your needs. One great part of Udemy is each course comes with a certificate of completion. While Udemy is not an accredited institution, these certificates can be useful to prove that you have learned these skills. Also, some courses on Udemy come with separate certificates from the instructor, so you can have several documents of your achievement.

Coursera

When it comes to online learning, few sites match up to Coursera. It is an accredited site that hosts college-level lectures from professors at actual colleges around the world. There is currently a Fundamentals of Computer Network Security Specialization that includes four courses on network security. The third course in the series is about hacking and patching, which goes to show that hacking is considered an important exercise to learning about cyber security. You can audit most Coursera courses for free, but if you pay, you can receive a certificate that may be transferable to colleges. If not, you at least have an accredited document to state you have thorough knowledge of the skills presented. The only downside to Coursera is, unlike Udemy, it is not flexible. You do have assignments to complete by a due date, so you will be held accountable if you forget to work on the course for a few weeks.

Cybrary

Cybrary is a site that has flown mostly under the radar, but I think it offers some great courses on cyber security. Penetration Testing and Ethical Hacking is a fantastic course that, once again, uses ethical hacking to learn about security methods. This site is similar to Udemy in that you can learn on your own time. You also earn a certificate, just as you do on the other two sites. One of the largest benefits of Cybrary is it is niche to the cyber security field, so you’ll find content from experts. The goal of the site is to make cyber security information available to anyone, so there are classes from beginner to advanced. I highly suggest checking this site out.

If you’re looking to learn about cyber security or brush up your skills, these three sites are the places to go. You can take hundreds (or thousands) of hours of courses, and at the end of the day, you’ll have many certificates to show your excellence. What are you waiting for? Use hacking to your advantage and learn how to protect your sensitive information.