When you consider the devastating effects of cyberattacks on companies like Equifax, Facebook, and T-Mobile, it’s no surprise that businesses are paying more than ever to hire in-demand cybersecurity experts to protect their sensitive data and valuable assets. According to IBM’s annual Cost of a Data Breach Study, a single data breach can cost a company up to $3.29 million, up 12 percent from the cost of breaches in 2014.
Here are the top highest-paid cybersecurity jobs, along with their average cyber security salary ranges, so you could get the salary data you need to hire the experts or get a job in the niche.
What is cyber security?
Rapid technological advancement has led to a cybercrime increase. Gone are the days of a security guard, a card key, and your dog’s name as a password. As a result, cybersecurity experts who can protect digital data are highly demanded.
Cyber security is the practice of protecting computers, servers, mobile devices, electronic systems, networks, and data from malicious attacks. We also know it as electronic information security or information technology security.
The federal agency investigating cybercrime (FBI) says the threat is growing. Computer and network intrusions are a major concern, and such attacks cost billions of dollars to repair every year; some disabled vital systems, such as hospitals, banks, and 911 services.
Cybersecurity is now a top business concern, and cyberattacks are possible in any scenario.
It can bring your company to its knees.
Top jobs in cyber security
Careers in cybersecurity are on the rise. NICCS says that the demand for cybersecurity experts is growing 12 times faster than the US job market. The jobs that organizations are looking to fill include cybersecurity engineers and analysts. Chief information security officers (CISOs), typically the company’s highest-ranking cybersecurity employees, can earn six-figure salaries. But it isn’t the only well-paid job in the field. Other high-paying cyber security jobs include:
Information Security Analyst
Bachelor’s degree in Computer Science or related field required. Employers in the computer, business, financial, and consulting industries prefer analysts with prior experience of planning and implementing security measures to protect an organization’s computer networks and systems. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, an information security analyst earns $98,350 annually, while managers can earn over $120,000.
Companies hire these professionals for their skills and experience in designing, developing, and implementing secure network solutions to defend against advanced cyberattacks, hacking attempts, and persistent threats.
Hiring a Cybersecurity Engineer will strengthen your cybersecurity team due to their extensive knowledge and experience. This is the role you should hire first to elevate your team.
These security experts design, plan, and implement security measures for your infrastructure. They can work with Penetration Testers and Information Security Analysts to identify vulnerabilities before hackers do.
Suppose your company has suffered a data breach or is infected by malware. In that case, a Cybersecurity Analyst can help mitigate the damage and keep you safe from future attacks.
According to a McAfee survey, security managers believe hiring ethical hackers gives them a better grasp of hacker logic and critical cybersecurity skills. Do you run security tests quarterly, monthly, or daily? If so, you must invest in attracting and retaining these professionals.
Penetration Testers perform extensive tests on computer systems, networks, and web applications to find vulnerabilities that cybercriminals can exploit. Hiring hackers for security roles may seem counterintuitive, but it will provide you with a new pool of candidates with insider knowledge.
Computer Network Architect
Computer Network Architects are in charge of designing and constructing data communication networks such as local area networks (LANs), wide area networks (WANs), and intranets for their companies. They frequently get tasks to maintain these networks as well. According to the BLS, the median annual salary for a computer network architect is $109,020.
Knowing how to code is a skill that you can apply to any cybersecurity position. Source code auditors, for example, examine source code line by line for flaws. You’ll need to know your company’s coding language (C, C++, Java, etc.). The BLS shows the median annual salary for a computer programmer is $84,280, and it often grows.
The average cyber security salary in the niche
The average entry-level cyber security salary in the United States is $72,964, which is about $35.08 an hour. Entry-level cyber security salaries currently range between $44,500 (25th percentile) and $83,500 (75th percentile), with top earners (90th percentile) making $132,000 annually across the United States, indicating many opportunities for advancement and increased pay based on skill level, location, and years of experience.
Five jobs in the entry-level cyber security category pay more than averageFor example, it’s positions like Cyber Security Lead and Cyber Security Manager.
That’s 77.6% to 87.26% more than the average entry-level cyber security salary of $72,964. If you meet the qualifications, one of these related cyber security jobs may pay more than the average entry-level cyber security job.
|Job Title||Annual Salary||Monthly Pay||Weekly Pay||Hourly Wage|
|Cyber Security Manager||$136,625||$11,385||$2,627||$65.69|
|Manager IT Cyber Security||$136,264||$11,355||$2,620||$65.51|
|Cyber Security Lead||$133,499||$11,125||$2,567||$64.18|
|Senior Cyber Security Engineer||$132,558||$11,046||$2,549||$63.73|
|Director Cyber Security||$129,618||$10,802||$2,493||$62.32|
Where to learn cyber security to become a specialist
Cybersecurity is a relatively new field, and those who work in it come from a variety of educational and professional backgrounds. A Bachelor’s degree in Engineering or Computer Science is often (but not always) required, and a Master’s degree in Cybersecurity can help a job candidate stand out.
Cybersecurity leadership, cryptology, government and national security, network security, privacy engineering, and problem-solving skills are among the topics covered in the classes.
Many security analysts do not begin in cybersecurity. Usually, they start out as network or computer systems administrators. They may later pursue cyber security knowledge and skills. A coding bootcamp may be one option. Full-time or part-time cyber security bootcamps teach students the technical (and soft) skills (and certifications) required to land a cyber security job.
Bootcamps usually take 12-15 weeks, versus a four-year degree in a similar field. These courses teach students the fundamentals of IT security, how to identify, prevent and resolve corporate data breaches and cyber security incidents. These bootcamps also emphasize skills over theory, which is often taught in traditional educational programs.
Tuition varies by course discipline and location. The best cyber bootcamps cost between $15k and $20k. Bootcamps that prepare you for analyst roles tend to be slightly less expensive than bootcamps that prepare you for technical roles like Penetration Tester or Network Security Engineer.
With experts estimating that cybercrime will cost the global economy $10.5 trillion annually by 2025, it’s critical to get skilled in cybersecurity so you can earn high. Organizations are looking for people with problem-solving skills who can help them “reshape” their security thinking. It’s never too late to advance your education and gain a competitive edge in the job market, even if you don’t have a cybersecurity degree.
If you already have some tech education and experience, a cyber security bootcamp could help you change careers.