Information Security Degrees & Careers

Information security degree

The safety of a company's private computer information is absolutely crucial. Breeches in security can compromise client data, leaving customers at a financial risk or increasing the likelihood of identity theft. Moreover, a cyber attack can harshly affect the reputation of an organization, which can harm sales or decrease future business prospects.

For that reason, many companies look for accomplished information security analysts who are tasked with maintaining the safety and integrity of corporate computer networks and data systems. These professionals are responsible for constructing, testing and regularly updating electronic security measures, as newer technologies often need upgrades that keep them on the cutting edge of cyber safety. The duties of information security analysts have increased constantly throughout the years as cyber crime has risen, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics[i].

Becoming an effective information security analyst requires a great deal of technical expertise and a mastery of particular computer systems. For this reason, many professionals often must seek certifications in particular software programs to be considered for hire. Education, training and experience are pivotal. Many hopeful information security analysts rely on online classes to meet qualifications for hire. These courses are often easier to balance with a busy schedule and can be completed remotely.

Are Online Information Security Analyst Programs for You?

Here is what you may consider when choosing an online information security analyst program:

  • Requirements for hire typically vary by institution, your specific position and work-related responsibilities. However, most positions require a bachelor's degree in a computer-related field as well as relevant work experience, according to the BLS[i].
  • Some employers require additional education in the form of a master's degree in business administration that focuses on computer science coursework.
  • There are a wide array of certifications prospective information security analysts may seek to increase professional opportunities, such as the Certified Information Systems Security Professional certification or other designations specific to particular software programs.
  • Many employers look for candidates that already have a working background in related data security fields. For this reason, experience from internships and work study programs may be beneficial to you in the employment process.
  • Before signing up for online courses, consider what specific positions you may be considering with certain institutions and study what certifications may be necessary for hire. Afterward, explore what online classes may help you garner the experience to attain certifications or find related internship prospects.

Information Security Analyst Career Paths and Potential Salaries

Information security analysis is just one occupation under the large umbrella of computer science professions. Training in online courses may also prepare you for pursuing jobs in other positions as well. Research which options may be available using statistics compiled by the BLS.

Information Security Analyst[i]

These professionals assess risks and the effectiveness of organizations' data security systems and computer networks. They are charged with regularly updating systems, monitoring when and how breeches occur and simulating cyber attacks to measure current levels of security.

  • 2012 median annual salary: $86,170
  • Job growth through 2022: 37 percent (much faster than average)
  • Entry-level education: Bachelor's degree

Computer Network Architect[ii]

Computer network architects are charged with building computer networks and intranet systems specific to particular organizations. They decide what hardware and software systems are most viable for use and make security considerations while constructing these tools.

  • 2012 median annual salary: $91,000
  • Job growth through 2022: 15 percent (faster than average)
  • Entry-level education: Bachelor's degree

Computer and Information System Manager[iii]

These professionals manage and oversee all aspects of a company's computer-related activities. They carefully assess organizational goals, assign tasks to information technology teams and implement the correct strategies to meet these goals.

  • 2012 median annual salary: $120,950
  • Job growth through 2022: 15 percent (faster than average)
  • Entry-level education: Bachelor's degree