If you are a beginner and want to learn about cybersecurity but don’t have the money to afford a paid course, then YouTube is a great place to start. Here are some of the best YouTube channels to learn cybersecurity right now!
Cybersecurity is one of those things that we all know we should know more about, but let’s be real: most of us have no idea what the antivirus software on our computer is doing, how malware works, or what bug hunting is (and no, it doesn’t involve butterfly nets or collecting jars).
Despite the general lack of public knowledge, cybersecurity is arguably one of the most important things we can learn to protect ourselves and our computers from the ever-increasing threat of viruses and malware attacks.
Cybercriminals are becoming more sophisticated every day, and pretty much every sector is potentially at risk.
From education and healthcare to financial services and eCommerce, more and more of our lives and information is stored online.
There, it’s constantly at risk of being compromised or stolen by hackers and other cybercriminals.
This is a threat that affects pretty much all of us, and building a solid base of knowledge about cybersecurity puts you ahead of the game when it comes to protecting yourself.
One of the best ways for beginners to start learning cybersecurity in 2023 is by watching YouTube tutorials and informational videos on the subject.
In this article, I’ll explore which YouTube channels are the best for learning cybersecurity and what you can expect from each of them.
Top 10 Best YouTube Channels to Learn Cybersecurity
Without further ado, let’s check out some of the best YouTube channels to learn cybersecurity in 2023.
1. John Hammond
Frequent topics: malware analysis, the dark web, programming, cybersecurity careers, TryHackMe rooms.
When it comes to all things cybersecurity, it’s hard to find someone more knowledgeable than John Hammond.
He first started his channel in 2011, and it has since grown to boast 390K subscribers and over 19 million views.
He’s funny and relatable, and his tutorial videos often involve him figuring things out while he’s recording, so viewers can see and learn from his thought process.
He covers an impressively wide range of topics relating to cybersecurity, from basic hacking techniques and must-have information about the dark web to interviews with cybersecurity experts and career recruiters.
Many of his videos use practice rooms from the cybersecurity learning tool TryHackMe (more on that later) to demonstrate hacking techniques.
This is especially helpful to anyone using TryHackMe to learn cybersecurity, as you can watch John Hammond’s videos to supplement your education and learn alongside him.
Link to John Hammond’s YouTube channel: https://www.youtube.com/c/JohnHammond010
Frequent topics: Hacking, Minecraft, security bug hunting and vulnerability troubleshooting, security hardware reviews.
LiveOverflow offers some of the most in-depth cybersecurity tutorials on YouTube.
Founded by Fabian Faessler, who refers to himself as a “wannabe hacker,” the channel goes in-depth on a wide range of cybersecurity-related topics
with a particular emphasis on hacking, CFT (“capture the flag”, a type of information security competition) write-up videos, mobile security, and finding bugs in security systems.
There’s also a very comprehensive and popular set of videos about hacking in Minecraft and other video games, each of which has tens of thousands of views.
Link to LiveOverflow: https://www.youtube.com/c/LiveOverflow
Frequent topics: DFIR (digital forensics and incident response), tutorials on different web tools, malware analysis, and memory forensics.
With a little over 33,000 subscribers, 13cubed isn’t the most well-known cybersecurity YouTube channel. However, it’s a hidden gem that offers a wealth of great content and useful information.
If you’re interested in the more niche, unique aspects of cybersecurity, 13cubed is the channel for you. 13cubed offers reviews and tutorials of some pretty uncommon tools, including YARA, Redline, and iLEAPP.
If you’re looking for a more bite-sized start to cybersecurity, 13cubed also offers a series of videos it calls “shorts,” which (as the name suggests) are 7-9 minute quick introductions to topics ranging from Linux Forensics to products like EventFinder2.
Link to 13cubed: https://www.youtube.com/c/13cubed
Frequent topics: artificial intelligence, computer graphics, mathematical theory, algorithms, data analysis.
Founded in 2009, Computerphile is another great YouTube channel devoted to educating the masses about cybersecurity.
One of the best things about Computerphile is that there’s something for everyone, from beginners to computer science experts.
Some of their recent posts include videos breaking down how WiFi works and how to store secure passwords, as well as more complex topics like running an SQL injection attack.
The creator of Computerphile, Brady Haran, also publishes a YouTube channel called Numberphile dedicated to exploring advanced mathematical concepts and theories.
These topics may not be for everyone, but a popular video on the channel entitled “The Scientific Way to Cut a Cake” is a useful place to begin your mathematical education!
Link to Computerphile: https://www.youtube.com/user/Computerphile
Frequent topics: CTF operations, hacking and HackTheBox tutorials, data analysis.
Founded in 2016, IppSec is one of the newer cybersecurity YouTube channels on my list, and its popularity is rapidly growing.
With colorful, easy-to-understand tutorials and a simple, well-organized content structure, IppSec is a great place to look for information about HackTheBox, UHC, and CTF.
It doesn’t have the most diverse range of videos yet, but it’s a fast-growing YouTube channel with a lot of potentials.
Link to IppSec: https://www.youtube.com/c/ippsec
Frequent topics: ethical hacking, penetration testing, cybersecurity courses and tutorials.
With just under 680K followers, Hackersploit is one of the most popular cybersecurity-focused YouTube channels on my list, and it’s easy to understand why.
Their high-level graphics and attention to aesthetic detail give Hackersploit’s videos a professional quality that’s pretty much unmatched.
They organize their videos into complete courses, which include Penetration Testing Bootcamp, Red Team Tutorials, Ethical Hacking and Penetration Testing, and Web App Penetration Testing Tutorials.
Hackersploit is all about what it refers to as “ethical hacking,” which is hacking without malicious intent.
Their virtual labs and courses let users learn about attacks and defense systems at their own speed, and they even offer real-life hacking scenarios for educational purposes.
If you’re interested in cybersecurity as a career, you can check out Hackersploit’s helpful “Cybersecurity Career Roadmap” video.
Link to Hackersploit: https://www.youtube.com/c/HackerSploit
Frequent topics: defense against cyber attacks, cybersecurity careers, skills and training for amateurs.
Infosec is one of the most comprehensive cybersecurity-focused YouTube channels, covering topics that run the gamut from cybersecurity career advice to the history of penetration testing and security awareness training.
If you’re looking for a really in-depth look at the world of cybersecurity past and present, Infosec is the channel for you.
Infosec also publishes a weekly podcast called the Cyber Work Podcast on cybersecurity-related topics, featuring mostly interviews with cybersecurity professionals and experts in the field. This content is also available on their YouTube channel.
Link to Infosec: https://www.youtube.com/c/InfoSecInstitute
8. The Cyber Mentor
Frequent topics: ethical hacking, web application penetration testing, Linux, reviews of bug hunting, and other tools.
At The Cyber Mentor, ethical hacking is the name of the game. The channel’s creator refers to himself as “a hacker by trade,” but stresses that he uses his skills for good rather than evil.
In addition to full-length ethical hacking courses, he offers content about different products and web tools, web application pen testing, and advice for building a career in cybersecurity.
His style is straightforward, approachable, and often funny, and with over 320K subscribers and millions of views, it’s clear that his approach to cybersecurity resonates with viewers.
You can subscribe for a full, free course in ethical hacking or just begin by checking out his shorter product reviews and one-off tutorial videos.
Link to The Cyber Mentor: https://www.youtube.com/c/TheCyberMentor/featured
9. Security Now
Frequent topics: privacy, application security, hacking, cybercrime news, professional advice.
Run by two professional cybersecurity experts, Steve Gibson and Leo Laporte.
Security Now is a great channel to find information on topics varying from the latest security and cybercrime updates to advanced computer programming and product reviews.
Most of the videos are structured like a podcast, with the two hosts having a free-flowing conversation about different topics.
The only downside of Security Now is that its videos aren’t organized by category – just by upload date and/or popularity.
This isn’t necessarily a problem, but it can make it a bit annoying if you’re looking for video content on a specific topic.
Link to The Security Now: https://www.youtube.com/c/securitynow
10. The PC Security Channel
Frequent topics: Antivirus product reviews, Windows security, malware news and updates, basic cybersecurity education, and tutorials.
The PC Security Channel was founded on the belief that everyone should be able to arm themselves with the knowledge they need to protect their identities and their computer systems from online threats.
Their videos include easy-to-follow demonstrations and simple, informative breakdowns of complex topics like “hardening” your Windows security and recognizing different types of malware.
They do a great job making cybersecurity accessible to a wide audience with varying degrees of prior knowledge.
If you’re looking for an education-focused YouTube channel geared toward all skill levels, The PC Security Channel is a great place to start.
Link to The PC Security Channel: https://www.youtube.com/c/thepcsecuritychannel
Why Learn Cybersecurity?
As the threat of cyber attacks increases daily, there’s never been a better time to arm yourself with the knowledge you need to protect your computer system and your identity online.
You can think of cybersecurity as an arms race: with every step towards increased security, hackers and other bad actors on the internet increase the sophistication of their attacks as well.
In addition to risks to your personal information and OS, cybercrime is a serious threat to businesses as well: it’s estimated that by 2024 cybercrime will cost e-commerce businesses over $25 billion every year.
You may think that your online security has more to do with the security systems built into your computer, but considering that up to 85% of online security breaches are caused by individual people’s mistakes (rather than system failures), knowing what’s what when it comes to cybersecurity can make a crucial difference.
Knowledge is power, and the best way to protect yourself and your computer systems is to get educated.
How to Learn Cybersecurity for Free?
So, let’s say you want to get started learning the ins and outs of cybersecurity, but you don’t have the money to pay for an expensive course or degree. How can you start learning cybersecurity for free?
Watch YouTube Videos
These days, there is a wealth of information about cybersecurity available for free online. On YouTube, in particular, you can find tons of useful tips, tricks, and background knowledge about cybersecurity.
While you likely won’t become an expert overnight just from watching YouTube videos, you can develop a very solid base of knowledge from all of the cybersecurity YouTube channels I listed above.
Take a Free or Paid Cybersecurity Course
If you want to take your cybersecurity knowledge to the next level, you can take a course. Both free and paid courses are available online, and there’s an almost overwhelming number of options.
One of the best free courses is TryHackMe.
TryHackMe offers tons of individual lessons on specific topics, as well as three full courses geared towards different levels of experience, from total beginner to intermediate/advanced.
You can learn a wide range from TryHackMe, from network security and web hacking to Windows and Linux basics and cryptography.
It’s worth noting, however, that TryHackMe isn’t completely free: rather, it offers a mix of free and paid lessons.
Another great free option for learning cybersecurity is HackTheBox. Like TryHackMe, HackTheBox offers both free and paid tiers.
HackTheBox is focused on offensive security (in other words, hacking) and teaches users how to hack using a live practice training area where you can learn and test out your hacking skills without doing any damage to real computer systems.
Another completely free cybersecurity course is SANS Cyber Aces, it’s aimed at individuals developing skills and careers in cybersecurity.
One of the leading and most recognized paid cybersecurity course is CompTIA Security+. This is a security certification training course with global recognition, aimed at beginners giving students the baseline skills necessary to perform core security functions and pursue a career in IT security.
What is Cybersecurity?
Also referred to as computer security or information technology security, cybersecurity is the protection of computer networks and systems from any and all threats, including theft, damage, or other harm to their hardware or software.
To put it simply, if it protects your computer or digital device from harm, it probably falls under the umbrella category of cybersecurity.
Why should I care about Cybersecurity?
Cybersecurity is a huge field that’s growing pretty much every minute. As more and more of our lives and our societies become dependent on computerized technology – and as increasing amounts of our private data and information are stored on computers – the arms race between security providers and hackers rages on.
With so many threats out there, cybersecurity is a growth industry with a ton of employment potential. But even if you don’t want to turn it into a career, knowing the ins and outs of cybersecurity can help you protect your own computer systems and data from threats.
Knowledge is power, and the more you know, the more you can avoid falling into some of the sneakiest malware attacks out there. Go here for all the latest cybersecurity statistics and trends for 2023.
What is the best way to learn Cybersecurity in 2023?
For beginners, the best way to dip your toes into cybersecurity is through YouTube channels that offer educational videos and tutorials from specialists in the field.
If you’re looking to get more involved, you can sign up for a free or paid online class and take your cybersecurity knowledge to the next level.
Is it really possible to learn Cybersecurity from YouTube videos?
It is indeed possible to learn a lot about cybersecurity from YouTube experts.
However, if you’re planning to build a career as a cybersecurity specialist, you’ll need professional training since, unfortunately, most companies won’t accept “YouTube” as your educational credentials on your CV.
Summary – Best YouTube Channels to Learn Cybersecurity in 2023
Things on the internet change at lightning speed, and if you’re trying to dip a toe into the world of cybersecurity, it can feel impossible to know where to start.
But there’s no need to feel overwhelmed: all of the YouTube channels on my list are fantastic resources for information and tutorials about pretty much any and all aspects of cybersecurity.
Everyone learns differently: some people prefer the easygoing, natural style of podcast conversations, whereas others need lots of graphic elements and visual tutorials.
Whatever works for you, you’re sure to be able to find a YouTube channel that helps you kickstart your knowledge of cybersecurity – and maybe even begin building the foundation for a career or side hustle in this fast-growing field.