A Security Engineer is a specialist who build and maintain systems that are robust enough to withstand malicious attacks and service denials. He/she basically ensure that security is considered and embedded during the design phase of all system development and acquisition projects before they are built/acquired rather than retrofitting controls/security measures later when the system is in production, which are usually expensive and counterproductive. They build resilience in the system to be able to withstand possible disruption/denials of service arising from natural disasters and malicious acts. Some of the responsibilities of Security Engineer are not limited to innovating ways of solving existing system security concerns, automate security incidents detection and tracking, conduct vulnerability/security assessment, penetration testing and risk analysis on IT infrastructure/assets, implement authentication, authorization and accounting controls across all enterprise systems, implement cryptographic solutions on relevant IT platforms and management of encryption keys, configure perimeter security solutions such as firewalls, intrusion detection systems (IDS), intrusion prevention systems (IPS), source and evaluate new technologies and processes that enhance security capabilities, ensure secure coding practice/culture in software development lifecycle and methodologies by using secure codes, methods and functions, develop, implement and maintain security policies (physical security policy, password policy, IT security policy) among other functions.
A Security Engineer can aspire to become a Security Architect, Security Manager or Security Consultant and could rise to become CISO or Security Director. Some of the aspects of security engineering are Network Security Engineer, Systems Security Engineer, Information Security Engineer.
Security Engineer could reports to the CISO or CIO.
To be endorsed as an Security Engineer, practitioners must acquire certification such as Certified Information Systems Security Professional (CISSP) by ISC2, Cisco Certified Network Professional (CCNP) Security, Certified Information Security Manager (CISM) or Certified Ethical Hacker (CEH) by EC-Council among others.