Cisco Firewall Specialist

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A Cisco Firewall Specialist is responsible for proactive network operating and reduction of business disruption. They work towards improving the quality and effectiveness of the services. The specialist is accountable for managing the assigned IT services as well.

The Cisco Firewall Specialist should be able to implement and maintain Cisco firewalls. They should have a proper understanding of the features, functions, and benefits of the equipment. The professionals must identify and perform basic tasks to protect the network routers and switches. The specialist needs to execute the security appliance for basic network connectivity.

The professional usually plays a prominent role in describing the routing functionality of the firewall.  The candidates should be able to configure the routing and switching on a security appliance. The specialist should know how to restrict inbound traffic from untrusted sources. The certified professionals must monitor and manage the installed security appliance.

Cisco Firewall Specialist Job Description

The firewall specialist job involves managing the network and security platforms according to Cisco's procedures and processes. The specialist should be the primary contact for any technical assistance and track all the issues. They must enhance the effectiveness of IT services by sharing knowledge with the staff.

Usually, the Cisco Firewall Specialist plays a prominent role in implementing the network security rules and mitigating network attacks. They should take the responsibility of firewall troubleshooting and maintenance.  The professionals will have to resolve any issues related to the organization. The professionals must ensure the maintenance of clustered firewall environments for customers using Check Point High Availability.

They should have proper knowledge about IPS Software blades and others. It is their responsibility to create Log analysis and correlation of monthly reports. The professionals must develop signatures and traps to evaluate the traffic pattern. The specialists should be well versed with Checkpoint models, capabilities, and architectures. It is the responsibility of Firewall Specialist to assist in managing the data and security costs by keeping track of services. They should establish robust management procedures to minimize business disruption.

The Cisco Firewall Specialist provides technical assistance required for VPN client infrastructure. They should offer cost-effective resolutions to the organization. The professional should track device inventory and offer support for the clients. The primary responsibility of the specialists is to configure, administer, and document firewall infrastructure, working with Cisco ASA/Checkpoint.

As a part of their job, they need to develop innovative initiatives to improve the quality and effectiveness of the services. The professional must also play an active role in identify the cause of any IT service incident and effectively resolve any issues.

The specialist diagnoses and rectify any problems with the network and firewalls and associated peripherals. They should maintain our firewalls and stay updated on any Cisco security vulnerabilities and how they affect our network. It is them who identify the opportunities to improve overall operational performance & saving costs.

The specialist must conduct a proper analysis and reduce the severity of the operational incidents. It is essential to have an appropriate understanding of the checkpoint firewall including HA, Virtual Systems, and vSec. They are responsible for ASA firewall experience including multiple contexts and HA.

The Cisco Firewall Specialist must offer technical support and should be capable of handling WAN connectivity issues, including the site to site VPNs, VPLS, and MPLS. They should know how to support Cisco routers, switches, and other network equipment and must understand and assist in handling F5 Loadbalancers and Netscaler Gateway.

Educational Qualifications

The individual must have a bachelor’s degree in computer science, information technology, telecommunications, or any related field. The main areas of focus are expertise with routers and Cisco switches, Cisco networking software and LAN/WAN networks. The additional skills include the ability to analyze and solve problems, good interpersonal skills, the ability to describe technical terms in the non-technical language. Employers will opt for individuals with prior work experience as well. Some organizations will look for a master’s degree candidate or some other specialization.

Cisco Firewall Specialist Certifications

Cisco Certified Network Associate (CCNA)
CCNA certification is for candidates who are interested in network installation, operations, and troubleshooting.

Cisco Adaptive Security Appliance (ASA)
The Cisco Adaptive Security Appliance certification is for professionals who want to pursue the implementation of security technologies. They will be using the Adaptive Security Appliance (ASA), especially firewall and VPN functionality. The candidates will have great expertise to describe, configure, verify and manage the ASA products and the Adaptive Security Device Manager (ASDM).

Cisco Certified Network Professional (CCNP)
The Cisco Certified Network Professional will plan, implement, verify and troubleshoot local and wide-area enterprise networks.  They work in collaboration with experts in advanced security, voice, wireless, and video solutions. The professional must be capable of working on complex network solutions.

Cisco Certified Internetwork Expert (CCIE)
The CCIE certification is specially designed for senior networking professionals. It will enable the candidates to develop, build, implement, maintain and troubleshoot complex enterprise networking infrastructures.

Cisco Firewall Specialist Salary
According to Payscale.com, this specialist earns about $115K in the United States. The typical pay scale ranges from $81,411 - $146,054 for this position.  As per Indeed.com, on an average, Cisco Firewall Specialist salary ranges from approximately $53,994 per year for Network Specialist to $107,430 per year for IT Security Specialist.

The career outlook for Cisco Firewall Specialist

As per the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, there is expected to an increase of 20 percent in the job sector between 2012 and 2022. The security specialists are supposed to be in great demand in the coming years. With the prominence of firewall growing, the organizations will be investing more in the coming years.

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