Cyber security threats have always been moving targets. Hackers continually adapt their tactics to get around increased security measures and continue compromising networks and the data they contain. Organizations and individuals have had to pivot to keep their systems and data safe from these ever-evolving threats. Recent changes to how and where people access information networks have created major new network security challenges.

The COVID-19 pandemic has catalyzed a “new normal” in the workplace, one that may never completely reverse itself, even if or when the pandemic ends. The need to keep people safely isolated from one another forced many companies to transform their workforce to mostly or completely remote work—even some companies that never previously considered doing so. Major companies including Microsoft, Google, Zillow, and Siemens have already made their remote work policies permanent.

While work-from-home arrangements offer greater personal safety and convenience to professionals, they also alter their company’s cyber security landscape. IT departments everywhere have had to contend with the special concerns a remote workforce brings and adapt to ensure that the individuals and the company remain safe from cyberattacks. These are a few of the emerging technology tools that are helping safeguard data and systems used by remote workers:


Businesses and individuals have been storing data “in the cloud” for many years. SASE (pronounced “sassy”), or secure access service edge, is a security framework that combines all of an organization’s network connectivity and security tools into one cloud-based system. While SASE is still in the early stages, it’s estimated that 40% of organizations will be implementing SASE by 2024.


XDR, or extended detection and response, is a system that assesses detections across multiple security layers, including email, servers, and a network, to centralize and ensure more reliable threat detection and response.

Zero Trust

Zero trust takes the approach that all attempts to access information systems, whether coming from internal parties or outside parties, should be authenticated before access is granted. Even for employees or clients with legitimate reasons to access a network, zero trust eliminates automatic access. This method requires identity and device authentication not just at a network’s perimeter, as security systems have traditionally done, but in various places throughout the network. A real-world comparison would be having to use one’s access badge to get into an office building, then again to access the elevator, then again to open the door to a specific office. Constant reauthentication is at the core of zero trust.

Master Cyber Security Online

The University of Texas Permian Basin offers two 100% online cyber security certificate programs that equip you with vital skills you can put into practice immediately, regardless of your current level of experience. Whether you’re just starting a cyber security career or are already working in the field, one of these credentials can make you even more valuable to your organization:

Undergraduate Cyber Security Certificate

UT Permian Basin’s 14-credit Undergraduate Cyber Security Certificate empowers you with the strategic and technical expertise required to recognize and describe cyber security concerns in IT operations and software. As you progress through our program, you’ll acquire techniques, skills, and tools that will be invaluable to you in an entry-level cyber security job. This program is available to students with a non-degree status, which means you can apply for admission even if you haven’t yet begun a college degree program. You can also add this certificate to another UT Permian Basin degree program, culminating in two valuable credentials.

Graduate Cyber Security Certificate

If you’ve already completed a bachelor’s degree from UT Permian Basin or another accredited university, we encourage you to apply to our 12-credit Graduate Cyber Security Certificate program! Designed to empower you with the skills required to move up into advanced cyber security positions, this program explores advanced encryption techniques, demonstrates ways to uncover network security vulnerabilities and breaches, and provides you with the tools to stop and neutralize them.

Build Vital Career Skills on Your Schedule

Both of our convenient, 100% online cyber security certificate programs allow you to complete coursework from anywhere in the world at your own pace. Many of the courses for these programs are delivered in an asynchronous format, enabling you to learn on your own schedule while giving your full attention to work and personal commitments.

See what our 100% online cyber security certificate programs can do for your career!