Newbie seeking security advice

DhraycoDhrayco Member Posts: 2 ■■■□□□□□□□
I've gone through some of the posts here and and learned a lot from the advice given to them.
But I feel like my case is unique.
I'm Victor from Africa. Been on and off various networking jobs. Have Indepth knowledge in Cisco CCNA & CCNP and Checkpoint CCSA. Also recently started software dev (don't know how this would fit in... Wish I had a mentor). Decided this year that I needed these certifications to advance properly in my career. (the love for music stole almost 5 years from really focusing on my passion for network security). 
Then just as I was about to venture into actually getting certified... I stumble on ceh, crisc, cissp, cism, etc.... I Google top IT security certifications and I'm stunned to find that none of my beloved certifications are listed. 
The thing is now I'm a bit confused on what to focus on. After a lot of reading online about vendor specific vs vendor neutral certs which eventually brought me here... I find that people always say "well it depends"...
I wish I can have a straight and clearly defined path/advice on what to do first considering that I'm not financially free to just get em all (even though I'd really love that) initially I always thought it was CCNA to get my foot in, then CCNP then CCSA then CCNA Security (to me I'm thinking, switch to router to firewalls to CCNA Security to know about threats.. U know... Naive logical thinking). But now  learning about vendor specific vs vendor neutral... I'm scared of spending a lot of money getting a certification and then limiting my job search by myself since all I gunned for was vendor specific.
Any further enlightenment will be really appreciated, considering I'm in Africa. Here Cisco basically seemed like the go to certification if u want to do networking, almost all job opportunities list that as requirements, but I'd also like to be prepared for opportunities abroad too. I never really thought about it as a vendor specific cert... That may limit me. I just thought of it like a network cerrification. I dunno how to contrruct my specific question but I just hope people can relate and guide me based on my short story😊


  • Options
    paul78paul78 Member Posts: 3,016 ■■■■■■■■■■
    edited March 2019
    Hello Victor. And welcome to TE.

    My suggestion is to not over-analyze and just figure out the next step. Do you already have the CCNA and/or CCNP? Since your interest is in network security, those would be good certifications to start with. You could also deepen your security knowledge and challenge yourself by doing self-study for something like CEH.

    I imagine that job opportunities vary depending on the part of Africa that you are in. I do have a good friend and some colleagues from west Africa, specifically Nigeria. My buddy started his career in networking - and he did get his CCNP. But these days he mostly works on cloud related technologies. However, the networking foundation was very valuable.

    You mentioned that you are learning programming - most people here would advocate for learning basic programming skills - especially since automation is extremely ubiquitous in all facets of technology. So - I would recommend that you continue on that track as well.

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