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Career Information for a Degree in Information Systems Security

Sep 08, 2019

Information systems security degree programs teach students to protect computer networks against theft or hacking. Continue reading for an overview of the possible educational programs as well as career and salary info related to some career options for graduates.

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A degree in information systems security prepares a professional to work for a business or organization in a position that works to safeguard data or information, manage or protect computer systems, or work with computer systems and networks in other ways. This field has a positive outlook for job growth through 2024. A bachelor's degree in information systems security or a related field is typically the minimum education requirement for most employers.

Essential Information

Information systems security degree programs prepare students to analyze, manage and provide security to data management, information storage and other information technology (IT) systems. Students complete hands-on components as well as take lecture courses on topics such as programming fundamentals, web design, security management, cryptography, Cisco networking, computer concepts, disaster recovery and cyber security laws. While associate, bachelor's and master's degrees are commonly available, a minimum of a bachelor's degree in a discipline such as information systems security, computer science or information science is typically required for employment. Voluntary certifications are also available.

Career Title Information Security Analyst Computer Systems Analyst Computer & Information Systems Manager
Education Requirements Bachelor's degree in computer science, computer programming, information systems security or related field Bachelor's degree in computer science, information science or management information systems; in addition, business courses can be helpful Bachelor's or master's degree in computer science or information science; some employers may prefer applicants with an MBA and undergraduate computer systems training
Projected Job Growth (2018-2028)* 32% 9% 11%
Median Annual Salary (May 2018)* $98,350 $88,740 $142,530

Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

Career Options

Individuals with degrees in information systems security are knowledgeable about anti-hacking software, IT security systems, program and systems designs, computer programming and Internet security. Graduates of information systems security programs might find work in fields such as management information systems, systems analysis and computer security, among others, and each of these positions is categorized by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) as a computer and information systems management position.

Information Security Analysts

Information security analysts install firewalls and software that are designed to protect organizational computer networks. These analysts also document security breaches and determine the potential damage. Employment for information security analysts was expected to rise by 32% between 2018 and 2028, which was much faster than the national average. In May of 2018, median annual earnings were $98,350, according to the BLS.

Computer Systems Analysts

It is the computer systems analyst's duty to assess the computer operating systems of a business and take measures to increase efficiency. These professionals may design new computer systems or recommend upgrades to existing ones. An employment expansion rate of 21% was predicted for computer systems analysts between 2018 and 2028. As of May 2018, median annual earnings for these specialists were $88,740, according to the BLS.

Computer & Information Systems Managers

Computer and information systems managers oversee the technological activities of a given business. They are responsible for determining the computer networking needs of a company and managing the installation of software and hardware components.

According to the BLS, employment for computer and information systems managers was projected to increase by 11% between 2018 and 2028, which is faster than the national occupational average. Growing technology, which was anticipated to require more computers in the workplace, was expected to contribute to the employment growth.

Another expected factor in this growth is the increasing amount of business transpiring over the Internet, which increases the demand for Internet and network security professionals. The BLS also reported that computer and information systems managers earned a median annual wage of $142,530 as of May 2018.

Certifications

Although certifications may not be a requirement for employment, many employers prefer to hire individuals that have certifications in their specialties. Some certifications can be obtained through software and hardware vendors and nationally recognized organizations. Examples of some certifications include Cisco Certified Network Associate (CCNA), Security Certified Network Professional (SCNP), Computing Technology Industry Association (CompTIA) A+ certification, Microsoft Certified IT Professional (MCIPT) and Certified Information Systems Security Professional (CISSP).

A career in information systems security could include a position as an analyst--either a computer systems analyst or information security analyst. Information security analysts may complete tasks such as installing firewalls and taking other measures to increase and assess security. Computer systems analysts work with businesses to assess and improve their computer systems; computer and information systems managers tend to make more annually, and they oversee many aspects on the technological side of business operations.

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