One of the hardest parts about learning anything on your own is not learning it, it’s learning how to learn it well.
I’ll be sharing three general steps covering almost most of it that you need to get started in the least amount of time possible.
Step 1: Focusing on basics and making sure the foundation is strong is still important but is often misunderstood. Spending too much time on the basics will lead to imposter syndrome (you will often doubt your skills, knowledge, and accomplishment no matter how much you try to improve). This usually happens when you try to be perfect before moving ahead. No one is perfect, will never be and in fact, we don’t need to be. The thing is you need to learn the alphabet before you can write an English novel but it’s not important to write a best-selling novel on your first go. (Learn everything you need to get started, but don’t try to be perfect, practice as you move along).
Syllabus: Refer to my repository.
Step 2: Networking is the key to a successful career, you need to build your personal brand, contribute to the community by sharing your knowledge, help as many people as you can without expecting anything in return, and attend events or conferences. Building your personal brand can be one of the best decisions for your career and life. No one cares how much you know or how much of a great person you are unless you show them, or prove to them with your knowledge and skills.
Step 3: Are you practicing yet? Practice makes one perfect/good only if you know what you’re doing and should be doing!
Types of practice/Learning to follow:
Project-based learning: Create scripts to automate tasks or improve the current ones, create vulnerable websites to practice your skills such as OWASP Top 10 and you can host them for free for everyone’s practice as well (again you’re giving them out to the community like this)
Teach others what you learned and take feedback for it: (Sir, Albert Einstein said — If you can’t explain something simply, you don’t know enough about it.) Make this your motto. You don’t need to master a topic or subject before teaching someone.
Build a portfolio website: (It’s free): Host/Share your projects there, publish your write-ups, and always welcome all sorts of feedback or criticism. (You’re not growing if you’re not making mistakes) Learn from them and work on them.
Don’t be fooled by people who promote their achievements/bug bounties rather than sharing their knowledge, write-ups, or experience. Also, don’t let money be your first priority right now. It will only lead to your downfall. Bounty is one of the perks of bug hunting which is something you will not always get. Focus on learning and implementing first.
The earning part:
Also, play live CTFs other than practice ones, contribute to open source (Inputting more info into open-source GitHub Repositories), Bug hunting/bounty, Internships (Prefer remote ones so that you can learn more and travel less), Apply to startups (your voice and inputs will be heard more here). To get recognized by big firms and recruiters, you need to establish your personal brand as I talked about earlier (show them and prove your worth). Don’t lose your earnings to scammers (They are everywhere in every form).
I don’t know what would work the best for you, nor do you know that right now. Join and explore communities but don’t get too comfortable there, filter out the noise (usually, the popular communities are filled with arrogant, Egoistic people but they will blame you for this). Don’t get blinded by someone’s popularity or fame. Great people are usually self-sufficient, they don’t need everyone’s validation. One thing that everyone can give you is “Learning”, be it good or bad. It will help you grow.
The thing is I am not a mentor, I am also a learner and that’s why I am sharing with you all my knowledge and experience. An idea is born out of another idea which makes the whole idea a vision that anyone can see and look for. Methods and tips are not limited to any extent. You are your own master and I know if you want to, you’ll figure out everything you want to.
You are smarter than you think you are, you always were because an intelligent being always questions their intelligence whereas a fool thinks they are ahead of everyone and knows everything. Stay humble and down-to-earth.
Getting started in cybersecurity has become so easy today and confusing at the same time. You need to beware of scammers that sell the idea of becoming an ethical hacker or master in any field. Most of them just want to sell their courses, and programs (that claim to make you an ethical hacker in no time) but most of them are full of crap, not all. In fact, they are just selling you the idea of that.
There is no straight road to becoming a master in any field. You start with nothing or something, get stuck, then ask for help (usually get bad advice or a bad experience) but then when you start again, don’t give up, learn from your mistakes and bad experiences, you get closer to your destination but the journey is more important and full of learning than the actual destination.
Sharing is caring, be sure to share the word around. Thanks for reading.😉