Best Laptops for Cyber Security [2020]

There are an abundance of different laptops out there for you to choose from. However, depending on what you need a laptop for, one might be more suited to you than another. This is especially true if you’re looking for a laptop for cyber security. The laptop you choose must have enough power to support your activities, and something that supports Kali Linux straight out of the box is a massive plus too.

So if you’re looking for a laptop for IT security and hacking, which model would be the best? Well, let’s look at some of the available laptops out there so that you can make your own decision.

Best Laptops for Cyber Security

ProductImageScreen SizeSpecsGet More Info
Alienware m15 R2Alienware m15 R2 15.6 Inch FHD 144Hz with Tobii Eye Tracker Gaming Laptop - (Lunar Light) Intel Core i7-9750H, 16 GB RAM, 512 GB SSD, NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2070 Max-Q with 8 GB GDDR6, Windows 10 Home15.6 Inch16GB RAMFind Best Price
Dell XPS 13Dell XPS 13 13.3 Inch 4K UHD Thin and Light, InfinityEdge Touchscreen 2019 Laptop (Silver) Intel Core i7-8565U, 16 GB RAM, 512 GB SSD, Windows 10 Home13.3 inch16GB RAMFind Best Price
Lenovo ThinkPad X1 CarbonLenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon 14' Laptop - Core i7 1.8GHz CPU, 16GB RAM, 512GB SSD, Windows 10 Pro14 inch16GB RAMFind Best Price
ASUS ZenBook UM431DAASUS ZenBook UM431DA 14 Inch IPS Full HD Thin Laptop (AMD Ryzen 7 3700U, 16GB RAM, 512 GB PCI-e SSD, NumberPad, Backlit Keyboard, Windows 10)14 inch16GB RAMFind Best Price

Alienware m15 R2

Alienware m15 R2 15.6 Inch FHD 144Hz with Tobii Eye Tracker Gaming Laptop - (Lunar Light) Intel Core i7-9750H, 16 GB RAM, 512 GB SSD, NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2070 Max-Q with 8 GB GDDR6, Windows 10 Home

Operating System: Windows OS | Screen size: 15.6 Inch | RAM: 16GB | Storage: 512GB SSD | Processor: Intel i7 | Average Battery Life: 13 hours

Whilst it isn’t a necessity to have a gaming laptop for this kind of work, it can be a good idea. This is because they’re not only made to the highest quality, but they’re also very easy to upgrade too. So this laptop might last for many years with 16GB of RAM, and if the future, you can easily upgrade it to 24 or 32GB of RAM to increase it’s power.

It’s not just the power that’s impressive about the Alienware m15 R2. It has pretty much everything you could need from a laptop, including a Intel Core i7-9750H processor, which has 6 cores and 12 threads. It also uses a NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2070 GPU, which is one of the best graphics card on the market at the moment.

Also impressive about this laptop is it’s display, which is obviously designed for gaming. It comes with a 144Hz refresh rate, and it has very thin bezels at it’s edges to make the most of the screen space. It’s also quite thin for a gaming laptop too, being around 18mm in thickness.

Whilst some will say that this laptop is overkill for cyber security, it will be good for this purpose for more than 5+ years into the future. So if you want to invest in a long term laptop, then the m15 R2 isn’t a bad choice.

Dell XPS 13

Dell XPS 13 13.3 Inch 4K UHD Thin and Light, InfinityEdge Touchscreen 2019 Laptop (Silver) Intel Core i7-8565U, 16 GB RAM, 512 GB SSD, Windows 10 Home

Operating System: Windows OS | Screen size: 13.3 Inch | RAM: 16GB | Storage: 512GB SSD | Processor: Intel i7 | Average Battery Life: 10.5 hours

Another one of the most popular laptop choices amongst cyber security professionals and student is the Dell XPS 13. You can also opt for the XPS 15, which is very similar to this model, but with a 15.6 inch screen instead.

It’s one of the most commonly recommended devices for IT professionals. In fact, they even released a Developers version of the device specifically for those that need a device for programming. It has enough power for all your needs, and a good strong battery life too.

The reason that the XPS 13 is so popular is mainly because of it’s design and build quality. It has one of the best displays out of any laptop on the market, with a full HD screen that produces some beautiful visuals. It’s not just the display that’s impressive, but the entire layout of the laptop – the keyboard is super responsive, and the touchpad is great too. I should also mention the chassis, which is of the highest standard.

Overall, this laptop is another popular model amongst security and IT professionals worldwide, and it deserves it’s place as one of the best options.

Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon

Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon 14' Laptop - Core i7 1.8GHz CPU, 16GB RAM, 512GB SSD, Windows 10 Pro

Operating System: Windows OS | Screen size: 14 Inch | RAM: 16GB | Storage: 512GB SSD | Processor: Intel i7 | Average Battery Life: 12 hours

The Thinkpad X1 Carbon is more than just a business laptop. It’s reliability and efficient design make it one of the best choices for cyber security, too.

One of the areas that is important for cyber security is a good battery life, as the work you’ll be doing can be quite battery intensive. Fortunately the Thinkpad X1 Carbon has one of the best battery lives out there on the market, so this is another good part about this laptop.

Overall, I’ve seen many people over the years recommending a Thinkpad as the best choice for those interested in cyber security. So, you can’t really go wrong with this model, as it’s amongst the best of the Thinkpad range.

ASUS ZenBook UM431DA

ASUS ZenBook UM431DA 14 Inch IPS Full HD Thin Laptop (AMD Ryzen 7 3700U, 16GB RAM, 512 GB PCI-e SSD, NumberPad, Backlit Keyboard, Windows 10)

Operating System: Windows OS | Screen size: 14 Inch | RAM: 16GB | Storage: 512GB SSD | Processor: Intel i7 | Average Battery Life: 10 hours

The most important factor in finding a good laptop for cyber security is the RAM that the laptop has. Whilst you can get by with 8GB of RAM, ideally you’d use a laptop with 16GB of RAM, especially if you want something that will still be usable in 3 or 4 years time.

Premium laptops with 16GB of RAM can be expensive. However, this ASUS UM431DA provides a much cheaper alternative, and it comes with the perfect amount of power for your needs. It has a AMD Ryzen 7 3700U, which is a quad-core processor that’s definitely competent enough. It also has 512GB os storage, which is a good amount as well.

The biggest concern with cheaper brands like ASUS is that they’re going to be lacking in quality. And whilst the display of this model isn’t the same level as the Dell XPS, it’s still pretty good. And yes, whilst the overall build quality isn’t as good as the Thinkpad, it’s 40 or 50% cheaper and it’s still perfectly usable.

So, in my opinion the RAM that your laptop has is more important than the brand – they all run Windows OS, and can easily boot and run Kali too. This makes it the top choice for those looking for something affordable.

Common Questions about Cyber Security

What kind of computer do I need for cyber security?

When you’re looking for a laptop specifically for cyber security, you should make sure that it has all the same qualities as any decent laptop. This means that you’re looking for at least 8GB of RAM, combined with an i5 or an i7 processor (or their AMD equivalent). You’ll also want to ensure that you have a lot of disk space, especially if you’re a cyber security student, as you’ll have tons of stuff to store.

Is MacBook good for cyber security?

Many people wonder whether a Macbook and the Mac OS is going to be good for cyber security. If you’re looking to take a cyber security course or you’re a student, then I’d advise that you actually opt for a Windows laptop instead. This is because in most cases, the instructions and lessons you get will be in Windows format. Whilst you can translate all of this to a Macbook, it will take time to do this.

What kind of laptop do hackers use?

Generally, more advanced hackers tend to opt for the more powerful laptops out there. Some of the most highly recommended laptops for hackers are Alienware laptops, as well as other premium models like the Lenovo Thinkpad. But, the specs of the laptop is far more important than the brand in this case.

What is the most secure laptop?

The truth is that all laptops are vulnerable to security attacks, but Macbooks are generally safer than Windows laptops. Not only because they’re harder to hack, but the majority of viruses are created for Windows devices. But with any laptop, there are security measures you can take to protect your laptop and it’s data.

What do hackers study?

Most hackers tend to study something around computing, programming or cyber security. Obviously, there’s no specific qualification out there for hackers, so they usually have a formal education in one of the above, if any.

Conclusion

All in all, this list of the best laptops for cyber security should help you find the right laptop. The most important thing is that you get a laptop with enough power to do what you need to, so if you can afford a laptop with 16GB+ of RAM, then it’s a good idea to invest. This way, you can be sure that your laptop is going to last you for a long time.

About Jon

Hey, I'm Jon. I'm an engineer by trade, so it makes sense that I'm obsessed with anything technology related! On the weekends, you can find me playing around with my computers or fixing something around the house. Feel free to leave a comment if you want to get in touch.

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