Security is an undeniably hot market these days, and for IT pros the chance to become a security analyst is a great opportunity to really make a difference for an employer. Cybercrime has been rapidly increasing around the world, with everyone from major corporations to individuals coming under attack. This is a great opportunity for security professionals due to high annual wages nationally and expected growth of almost 20 percent through 2024. According to a BLS nationwide survey, security analysts earn a median annual wage of $92,600 in May of 2016. The top 10 percent of earners in this field earn more than $147,290.
If you’re interested in exploring a career that is both challenging and rewarding, becoming an information security analyst is worth exploring. Here’s a look at an exciting job profile that’s on the rise and just might be the right one for your next career move.
Understanding the role
Information security analysts are needed to help companies protect their data and information (as well as that of their customers) from hacks that can misuse that information or even bring entire networks down. Security analysts are employed by IT service providers, banks, financial services organizations, governmental agencies, healthcare companies, and several other types of companies who are committed to maintaining and protecting their sensitive data.
The work itself is usually built around planning and implementing security measures that are designed to protect computer systems, networks, and the data they house. Information security analysts are counted on to stay up to date on the latest trends in cybersecurity, such as changing methodologies and technologies. Analysts are responsible for preventing data loss and service interruptions as they do what is necessary to protect a network effectively.
Other tasks that fall into the arena of a security analyst include creating and testing network disaster recovery plans, performing risk assessments, installing firewalls, data encryption, and other security measures, recommending security enhancements, and training staff on general security procedures.
Required education and training
The majority of information security analysts have a bachelor’s degree in computer information systems, programming, engineering, or a related field. Some employers may prefer a candidate with specialized knowledge of information systems, which can be obtained through a formal certificate or training program or on the job experience. Certain jobs may require advanced degrees, such as a Masters of Business Administration in Information Systems, or similar. Certifications are also available, including ones offered by well-known technology companies such as Microsoft and Cisco.
The specifics of the individual jobs may vary, but trends show that employers are looking for security analysts who have ingenuity, teamwork skills, creativity, and leadership to get the job done. For those professionals looking for jobs with advancement opportunities, this job might be the perfect fit with clear expectations, challenging work, and growing opportunities to test your skills in a fast-changing market.
Find Your Next Assignment as a Security Analyst
Are you looking for your next contract assignment as a security analyst? Contact ESGI today to get started on working with our team of recruiters!