Two distinguishing elements will be the subject of information security interview questions. These are tests to see if you know what you’re talking about and can explain it. Some questions will focus on simple concepts such as firewalls and the CIA triad. Others will force you to apply your knowledge to real-life situations. Here are some of the most frequently asked, Top 20 Information Security Analyst Interview Questions and Answers.
1. Why are You Interested in This Role?
Here interviewee wants to know how much you are interested in the role and why. The key information that is required by the interviewee over here is to determine the level of your interest and how much you are passionate about the job.
“From the start, I was interested in cyber-security and security-related jobs, and that is the reason that I continued my studies in the field of Information Security. I’m interested in this role as it completely suits me, and my past education supports me to start this career as the only career in my life.”
2. What are the Roles of an Information Security Analyst?
Here, the interviewee wants to know and analyze your knowledge regarding the subject and the field. The interviewee wants you to be concise and answer in just a few words.
“Information security analyst plans and carry’s out security steps to protect an organization’s computer networks and systems. Most information security analysts work for computer companies, consulting firms, or business and financial companies to protect their important data.”
3. What are the Qualities That an Information Security Analyst Needs to Be Successful?
The main purpose of this question is to know the most demanding skill sets that should be there in an information security analyst and a few things related to routines such as punctuality and dedication.
“A person interested in a security analyst career should have Strong Data Analysis Skills, Solid Sense of Logic, Ingenuity, Skilled Problem Solver, and Orientation to Detail. Other than that, he should be punctual and think things logically to make a way out of the problem”
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4. What Major Challenges Did You Face During Your Last Role? How Did You manage Them?
If you joined any previous job, then the interviewee over here wants to know what the few challenges that you must have faced (of course) were? And whenever we join any job, there are a few challenges that we face, and that’s what the interviewee wants to know. Try to be more general over here as if you’ll say that “I did not understand the work” then, of course, you’ll be out in a few minutes.
“The major challenge that I faced during my last job as an information security analyst was to manage work with teams because transferring them the data and making them understand about the work was little bit time-taking and due to that other tasks became tough for me to manage, but somehow, it took little bit effort and time and then I got the pace and managed the time and the work together.”
5. Describe Your Daily Routine as an Information security analyst?
The interviewee here wants to know what you generally do the entire day so that he or she can get an idea that you are currently on any task or not or are staying in touch with the field.
“I normally wake up early to align my extra outdoor activities and work accordingly. I am currently with a firm that is outsourcing its security-related tasks, so the first thing I do in the morning is to check my mail and open up the security panel where I can see the progress and manage the work.”
6. Describe Briefly About Your Experience
The interviewee wants to know everything related to your experience in the field of security analyst career. You can include everything over here, from your education to your final year project and then any job or freelancing work if done to show your exact experience. Try to be honest over here.
“First of all, I would like to say over here that I graduated as an information security analyst from XYZ University, which means that I have a degree related to Cybersecurity and Computer Sciences. My final year project was related to Cybersecurity, where my team and I had to counter and detect the attacks made by a group of hackers on our security systems. This project led my experience towards information security analyst, and recently I was hired by a security firm where I had to provide similar kinds of services.”
7. What Kind of Strategies and Mindset is Required for This Role?
The interviewers want to know over here what are goals and normal duty tasks that information security analyst normally performs and what are the core skills and mindset that information security analyst usually has?
“Information security analyst usually needs to be active anytime, or any second of the day; any threat can shut down the entire system. So he needs to be active on the screen and constantly observe for any threats entering the system. The strategies the information security analyst usually encompasses monitoring the system for possible threats, building the framework to pre-counter them and save the system, staying active, and requesting fellow team members to self breach the security systems to make the firewalls better.”
8. What Is the Biggest Challenge That You Foresee in This Job?
The interviewers want to know that there are any challenges that you foresee in the security analyst career, and they also want to know how confident you are and if you have any skill-related issues or not because hiring an amateur security analyst can risk their entire organization. So try to be confident over here, and most importantly, don’t lie over here, as it can ruin your career and their organization.
“The biggest challenge that I foresee in this job is, of course, understanding the workflow at the start. I have a complete grip over the security-related skills but still, understanding the organization’s structure and the working environment is something that takes time and affects the quality of work as well. As I move along with the structure and the environment, I will get used to it and perform better.”
9. How Do You Stay Motivated in Your Work?
The answer over here will show my interest in the field. The more interest, the more energized the answer, and the more it will show that you are motivated for the work. Try to give your best over here in a general form, of course!
“This field inspires me from the start. I selected computer sciences because I like to spend my time in front of my laptop or desktop. It is a drive from inside that keeps me motivated, and the basic concepts and knowledge that I have command of make things easier for me. So this is the only thing that keeps me motivated, and I think now many of the general issues that normally arise during this field, I know all of them.”
10. Describe a Time When You Failed in This Role and The Lesson You Learned?
Everyone fails… Failing is not an issue but not learning anything from it is an issue. So the interviewer wants to know when did you fail and what did you learn from it so that you never repeat that thing in their organization.
“Of course, everyone fails and again and again as well. But I remember once I failed in this career when I had a code written for me after doing lots of research and without making up the backup for it, I simply changed it to counter another threat which took another few days for me to write down the exact code again along with the research. This resulted in a delay, and my performance was also compromised, so I learned from it that whatever you do, make a copy of it.”
11. Why Do You Feel You are The Most Suited for This Role?
Tell more about your skills, educational background, and experience over here. Your interest and motivation also play a huge role, so try to state these things as this will make you the best choice for the role.
“My educational background, certificates, experience in the practical field, and interest, all these things make me the best choice for this role. If you have an interest, you gradually build skills in it and make the things work out for you. The most important thing is passion, and I am very concerned about this job, and I have skills for this job as well. So this is why I am pretty much, like confident, you can say, that I am the best suit for this job.”
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12. Share with Us Your Greatest Achievement.
Share your past experiences here, your certificates, degree, feedback from the clients, and other services that you have offered till now. It will be a good thing to submit all these things at this stage.
My greatest achievement is my progress in my last job and my final year project, as well as a few certificates that I got in the past few years. We made a virus that we tried to put into our systems via hacking and the firewall that we created, successfully stopping it from entering our security systems. At that time, everyone was clapping. I think that was one of the biggest moments that I noticed in my life.”
13. What is Cryptography?
It is a technical question, so the interviewer over here wants to know your knowledge. Be precise and give answers in a few lines.
“Cryptography is the discipline and study of ways for securing information and communication, to protect data from third parties who aren’t supposed to have access to it.”
14. What is the Difference Between IDS and IPS?
Simply define the definitions over here and don’t go into the details. Make it concise.
“IDS stands for Intrusion Detection System, and it merely detects intrusions, leaving the administrator to deal with the prevention. In contrast, in an IPS, or Intrusion Prevention System, the system detects the intrusion and takes action to prevent it.”
15. How is Encryption different from Hashing?
Encryption and Hashing are the ways to encrypt the data and protect it. Define both.
“To turn readable data into an unreadable format, both encryption and hashing are employed. The distinction is that encrypted data can be decrypted and converted back to original data, whereas hashed data cannot be converted back to its original form.”
16. What Is NSTISSC Security Model?
The NSTISSC is a National Security Telecommunication document that defines a model of information security. So the precise answer to this question will be:
“This is a reference to the document titled “The National Security Telecommunications and Information Systems Security Committee.” This document lays forth a thorough information security model. There are three dimensions to this model.”
17. What’s The Difference Between Symmetric And Public-Key Cryptography?
This question will be normally asked for the positions of GRC Consultant, SOC Analyst, Cloud Security Architect, and Data Protection Officer. You should have an understanding of cryptography to explain this concept. The best answer to this question is:
“A shared key between two parties is used in symmetric key cryptography. Asymmetric key cryptography employs a public-private key pair, with one key encrypting and the other decrypting data.”
18. Which Types Of Encryption Does Symmetric Key Encryption Use?
There are two types of Symmetric Key Encryption. Define both.
“One of the following encryption types are used in symmetric key encryption:
1) Stream ciphers: encrypt a message’s digits (usually bytes) or letters (in substitution ciphers) one by one.
2) Block ciphers: encrypts a group of bits as a single unit and then adds the plaintext to make the total size of the block a multiple of the block size. 64-bit blocks were regularly utilized. The Advanced Encryption Standard (AES) algorithm, authorized by the National Institute of Standards and Technology in December 2001, and the GCM block cipher mode of operation both use 128-bit blocks.”
19. What Are Three Ways To Authenticate Someone?
There are three types to authenticate someone. Define each of them over here.
“Something you know, something you have, and something you are the three sorts of authentication factors.
A password, a PIN, or the answers to a security question are all examples of something you know. This is one of the most prevalent methods for users to access their accounts. An authenticating device, such as an ID card or a cell phone, is something you have. Biometric information is something you are. A fingerprint, a voice password, or a signature can be used. This type of authentication is more difficult to obtain offsite, but it is also the most difficult to forge.
When you utilize two of these ways to access an account, it’s known as two-factor authentication. To log in, a user may be required to input their password, and then a code texted to their phone. When all three methods are used, it is called multi-factor authentication.
20. What Is The Difference Between Data Protection In Transit And Data Protection At Rest?
“Data protection at rest refers to the securing of data while it is in storage. Attackers can access this data if they get physical or digital access to the storage device on which it is stored.
Data protection in transit refers to the security of data sent via a network, such as an internet.
Security measures such as firewalls and network access control help to protect both of these sorts of data. Both forms of data should be encrypted as well. If an attacker gains access, they will be unable to read the data unless they break the encryption.”
Information Security Analyst is not an easy position. It involves many technical aspects, and knowing each of the technical codes is essential. Many people think they can be hired for this position, but this is not the case. The position requires knowledge, skills, expertise, and experience. Here are the top 20 Information Security Analyst Interview Questions and Answers to prepare you for the interview.
If you are applying for this position, then we wish you good luck with it, and do let us know in the comment how your interview went.