Spotlight on Career: Information Security Analyst — Defender of the People

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information security analyst

These days, pretty much every heist film involves hacking into a computer somewhere. And the modern day hero is often someone whose brains are even bigger than their biceps – an information security analyst!

With the rise in hacking attempts and successful data breaches of companies and the government, there’s an urgent need to keep consumer and classified information safe from cyber attacks.

That’s where information security analysts come in! They are responsible for safeguarding the networks of companies and government agencies.

Organizations are keen on protecting their systems…that’s why there’s a huge demand for these professionals. The Bureau of Labor Statistics projects an estimated employment growth of 25% until 2022 – which is much faster than the average for all occupations. Growth in cloud computing, cybersecurity, and mobile networks will further increase demand.

An entry-level information security analyst may use software to monitor and analyze information, while a more senior-level analyst may perform investigative work to determine whether a security breach has taken place. Typically they will also determine what steps need to be taken to contain the problem and prevent future incidents.

Typical duties entail:

  • Interfacing and acting as a go-between with management and the IT department
  • Researching various technologies to increase the organization’s efficiency
  • Choosing and configuring hardware and software
  • Overseeing the installation and configuration of new systems
  • Testing to ensure that the systems work as expected
  • Interpreting complex information from various sources and deciding on the best way to move forward on a project
  • Training IT staff and writing instruction manuals for new software

 

Most security analysts work full time for organizations, or as consultants. Some analysts may work from home.

People who are considering working in this field need strong analytical, communication and problem-solving skills. Analysts typically hold a bachelor’s degree in computer science, information technology, programming or engineering. Some employers look for applicants with a Masters of Business Administration in information systems or information technology. With a Master’s degree you will more likely be considered for higher level and upper management positions.

According to U.S. News and World Report, the average salary for an information security analyst is $88,590.

To learn more about this lucrative, challenging and in-demand career, check out the U.S. Department Bureau of Labor Statistics and imagine yourself as a modern day defender, warrior and protector of the people!