How To Sail Into The IT World, 6 Helpful Suggestions

Are you interested in breaking into the field of Information Technology (IT)? You're not alone. In recent years, IT has become one of the most sought-after and lucrative career paths, offering individuals the opportunity to join an ever-evolving, fast-paced industry that is constantly changing and innovating. From coding and cyber security to network administration and cloud computing, the possibilities are seemingly endless. But how do you get started? In this blog post, we'll explore some tips and tricks for getting into IT, from networking to studying for various certifications. Read on to find out more!

How To Sail Into The IT World, 6 Helpful Suggestions

Go To A Bootcamp

Bootcamps are an increasingly popular way to get into the field of IT. These programs provide intensive, hands-on training in a variety of IT topics, such as coding and web development, cyber security, data analysis, software engineering, and more. Bootcamps can take anywhere from 10 weeks to 6 months to complete depending on the program can cover anything from a cybersecurity bootcamp, an artificial intelligence boot camp, or a full-stack coding bootcamp. Unlike traditional university settings, boot camps focus on short-term goals and can help you get the skills needed to land your first job in IT quickly.

Earn A Professional Certification

It is important for those interested in IT to earn a professional certification. Certification programs can provide the specialized knowledge and expertise needed to stand out from other applicants. Many employers prefer candidates who have completed a certification program, as it shows that the person has put in the extra effort to gain additional skills.

Furthermore, many of these certifications come with a variety of additional benefits, such as discounts on job-related software and exclusive networking opportunities. With the wide range of certifications available, it is important to research which one best suits your career goals and objectives. Investing in professional certification can be an invaluable investment in your career.

Volunteer At A Company

Volunteering at a company in the IT field can be an excellent way to gain experience and learn more about the industry. Whether you volunteer with a startup or an established tech giant, the hands-on experience you gain can prove invaluable. Many companies offer internships or apprenticeships to help volunteers get familiar with their products and processes, and working in a professional environment can provide invaluable insight into the different aspects of IT.

Plus, networking with professionals in the field can open up opportunities for further advancement. If you're looking to break into the IT field, volunteering at a company is one of the best ways to get started.

Look For Internships

For those looking to break into the IT field, an internship is a great way to gain experience and begin to build their career. Internships can be found through organizations like universities, industry associations, private companies, and government organizations. Through these types of internships, students may have the opportunity to work with experienced professionals in their field, learn more about the industry, and gain valuable insight into the job market.

It is also a great way to build up a professional network and make connections that can help with future job prospects. Additionally, internships offer opportunities to gain real-world experience in IT and develop new skills or refine existing ones.

Women on Apple Computer

Expand Your Network

Networking is an essential part of getting into IT. It's important to connect with people in the field who can offer advice and guidance on how to break into the industry. Attend events, conferences, or seminars related to your desired role, and make sure you have a professional elevator pitch ready when meeting potential mentors or employers.

Don't forget about online networking – join LinkedIn, as well as industry-specific forums and groups. Interact with other professionals in the field and make sure you stay up to date on the latest trends, technologies, and resources related to IT. The connections you build now could become valuable allies for your future career.

Find A Mentor

Finding a mentor in the IT industry can be incredibly beneficial for anyone looking to grow and develop their career. A mentor is someone who has established themselves as an expert in the field, and they can provide valuable advice for those just starting out or advancing their current knowledge. They can offer guidance on how to progress in the field, introduce you to industry contacts, and help to develop your understanding of the technology.

It’s important to find a mentor who is knowledgeable about the specific areas you want to focus on, so do some research before committing to anyone. When you have found someone that seems suitable, approach them with humility and respect - they should be willing to provide guidance if asked properly - and you could find yourself with a valuable ally in your IT career.

In conclusion, the IT industry is an incredibly diverse and constantly evolving field, but breaking into it doesn't have to be a daunting task. With the right preparation and knowledge, you can find yourself in a successful career within the realm of IT. Researching certifications, volunteering or finding internships, expanding your network, and finding a mentor are all important steps on the road to success in this field. So, if you're looking to get into IT, use the tips outlined above and you’ll be well on your way!

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Online Threat Alerts Security Tips

Pay the safest way

Credit cards are the safest way to pay for online purchases because you can dispute the charges if you never get the goods or services or if the offer was misrepresented. Federal law limits your liability to $50 if someone makes unauthorized charges to your account, and most credit card issuers will remove them completely if you report the problem promptly.

Guard your personal information

In any transaction you conduct, make sure to check with your state or local consumer protection agency and the Better Business Bureau (BBB) to see if the seller, charity, company, or organization is credible. Be especially wary if the entity is unfamiliar to you. Always call the number found on a website’s contact information to make sure the number legitimately belongs to the entity you are dealing with.

Be careful of the information you share

Never give out your codes, passwords or personal information, unless you are sure of who you're dealing with

Know who you’re dealing with

Crooks pretending to be from companies you do business with may call or send an email, claiming they need to verify your personal information. Don’t provide your credit card or bank account number unless you are actually paying for something and know who you are sending payment to. Your social security number should not be necessary unless you are applying for credit. Be especially suspicious if someone claiming to be from a company with whom you have an account asks for information that the business already has.

Check your accounts

Regularly check your account transactions and report any suspicious or unauthorised transactions.

Don’t believe promises of easy money

If someone claims that you can earn money with little or no work, get a loan or credit card even if you have bad credit, or make money on an investment with little or no risk, it’s probably a scam. Oftentimes, offers that seem too good to be true, actually are too good to be true.

Do not open email from people you don’t know

If you are unsure whether an email you received is legitimate, try contacting the sender directly via other means. Do not click on any links in an email unless you are sure it is safe.

Think before you click

If an email or text message looks suspicious, don’t open any attachments or click on the links.

Verify urgent requests or unsolicited emails, messages or phone calls before you respond

If you receive a message or a phone call asking for immediate action and don't know the sender, it could be a phishing message.

Be careful with links and new website addresses

Malicious website addresses may appear almost identical to legitimate sites. Scammers often use a slight variation in spelling or logo to lure you. Malicious links can also come from friends whose email has unknowingly been compromised, so be careful.

Secure your personal information

Before providing any personal information, such as your date of birth, Social Security number, account numbers, and passwords, be sure the website is secure.

Stay informed on the latest cyber threats

Keep yourself up to date on current scams by visiting this website daily.

Use Strong Passwords

Strong passwords are critical to online security.

Keep your software up to date and maintain preventative software programs

Keep all of your software applications up to date on your computers and mobile devices. Install software that provides antivirus, firewall, and email filter services.

Update the operating systems on your electronic devices

Make sure your operating systems (OSs) and applications are up to date on all of your electronic devices. Older and unpatched versions of OSs and software are the target of many hacks. Read the CISA security tip on Understanding Patches and Software Updates for more information.

What if You Got Scammed?

Stop Contact With The Scammer

Hang up the phone. Do not reply to emails, messages, or letters that the scammer sends. Do not make any more payments to the scammer. Beware of additional scammers who may contact you claiming they can help you get your lost money back.

Secure Your Finances

  • Report potentially compromised bank account, credit or debit card information to your financial institution(s) immediately. They may be able to cancel or reverse fraudulent transactions.
  • Notify the three major credit bureaus. They can add a fraud alert to warn potential credit grantors that you may be a victim of identity theft. You may also want to consider placing a free security freeze on your credit report. Doing so prevents lenders and others from accessing your credit report entirely, which will prevent them from extending credit:

Check Your Computer

If your computer was accessed or otherwise affected by a scam, check to make sure that your anti-virus is up-to-date and running and that your system is free of malware and keylogging software. You may also need to seek the help of a computer repair company. Consider utilizing the Better Business Bureau’s website to find a reputable company.

Change Your Account Passwords

Update your bank, credit card, social media, and email account passwords to try to limit further unauthorized access. Make sure to choose strong passwords when changing account passwords.

Report The Scam

Reporting helps protect others. While agencies can’t always track down perpetrators of crimes against scammers, they can utilize the information gathered to record patterns of abuse which may lead to action being taken against a company or industry.

Report your issue to the following agencies based on the nature of the scam:

  • Local Law Enforcement: Consumers are encouraged to report scams to their local police department or sheriff’s office, especially if you lost money or property or had your identity compromised.
  • Federal Trade Commission: Contact the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) at 1-877-FTC-HELP (1-877-382-4357) or use the Online Complaint Assistant to report various types of fraud, including counterfeit checks, lottery or sweepstakes scams, and more.
  • If someone is using your personal information, like your Social Security, credit card, or bank account number, to open new accounts, make purchases, or get a tax refund, report it at This federal government site will also help you create your Identity Theft Report and a personal recovery plan based on your situation. Questions can be directed to 877-ID THEFT.

How To Recognize a Phishing Scam

Scammers use email or text messages to try to steal your passwords, account numbers, or Social Security numbers. If they get that information, they could get access to your email, bank, or other accounts. Or they could sell your information to other scammers. Scammers launch thousands of phishing attacks like these every day — and they’re often successful.

Scammers often update their tactics to keep up with the latest news or trends, but here are some common tactics used in phishing emails or text messages:

Phishing emails and text messages often tell a story to trick you into clicking on a link or opening an attachment. You might get an unexpected email or text message that looks like it’s from a company you know or trust, like a bank or a credit card or utility company. Or maybe it’s from an online payment website or app. The message could be from a scammer, who might

  • say they’ve noticed some suspicious activity or log-in attempts — they haven’t
  • claim there’s a problem with your account or your payment information — there isn’t
  • say you need to confirm some personal or financial information — you don’t
  • include an invoice you don’t recognize — it’s fake
  • want you to click on a link to make a payment — but the link has malware
  • say you’re eligible to register for a government refund — it’s a scam
  • offer a coupon for free stuff — it’s not real

About Online Threat Alerts (OTA)

Online Threat Alerts or OTA is an anti-cybercrime community that started in 2012. OTA alerts the public to cyber crimes and other web threats.

By alerting the public, we have prevented a lot of online users from getting scammed or becoming victims of cybercrimes.

With the ever-increasing number of people going online, it important to have a community like OTA that continuously alerts or protects those same people from cyber-criminals, scammers and hackers, who are every day finding new ways of carrying out their malicious activities.

Online users can help by reporting suspicious or malicious messages or websites to OTA. And, if they want to determine if a message or website is a threat or scam, they can use OTA's search engine to search for the website or parts of the message for information.

Help maintain Online Threat Alerts (OTA).

How To Sail Into The IT World, 6 Helpful Suggestions