Information Security Analysts plan and execute security measures to protect an organization’s information systems and network.  There is a growing need for security analysts as cyber attacks become more common and more complex. Security Analysts, need to stay one step ahead of hackers at all times by testing systems and ensuring safety from cyber attacks. They also must continue to learn about new security measures and how implementing them can enhance their organization’s security.

The average Information Security Analyst earns between $49,960  and $135,600 annually.

Average Starting Salary:
Starting salary for a Information Security Analyst is around $39,000 annually.

Key Responsibilities:

  • Monitor networks for security breaches and investigate breaches when they occur
  • Install equipment and software such as firewalls to protect the organization’s sensitive data and network
  • Create written reports of security breaches and what damage was caused
  • Audit security via penetration testing to simulate attacks looking for vulnerabilities in a system to exploit.
  • Research latest trends in Information Technology security and report back to higher-ups.
  • Plan and execute methods for ensuring security.
  • Develop security best practices for their organization that ensure security
  • Recommend security upgrades to management to further secure
  • Aid end-users in installing and understanding new security software and procedures

Necessary Skills:

  • Analytical Skills
  • Detail Oriented
  • Ingenuity
  • Problem Solving
  • Forward thinking
  • Researching Skills
  • Advanced knowledge of security

Degree and Experience Requirements:
Typically one needs a Bachelor’s Degree in Computer Science, or another related field. Many schools are now offering a concentration or degree programs specifically in Information Security as it is such a critical field for technology professionals. For those schools who don’t have a specific Security program, many offer courses that give one a good knowledge of Information security. Some employers may want a candidate to have a Masters of Business Administrations (MBA), which adds approximately two more years of schooling after one earns their Bachelor’s Degree.

There are also many Licenses or certificates one can earn to verify their knowledge to a potential employer. Typically one needs to pass a course and/or an exam to certify their knowledge in a particular area. Candidates who hold one of these certificates can stand out to future employers and are more likely to be selected for a position because they are  hold certifications in their area.

Getting Started:
Generally, to become a Information Security Analyst, one needs to have prior experience in the Information Technology field. Most employees typically start as network or systems administrators or for those going into database security, Database Administrators. However, it is  possible for a candidate with any IT experience to become an Information Security Analyst with the right prior work experience. Systems Analysts, for example, are often chosen systems security positions as they have experience already managing systems.

Future Outlook: 
The outlook for Information Security Analysts expects that the demand will increase 37 percent, far greater than the average growth of all occupations. As more organizations rely on computers to storage and maintain sensitive information, it is important to have a skilled professional to protect the data and network. Cyber attacks are becoming more common now more than ever, and hackers are becoming more sophisticated in how they are exploiting security flaws. In addition to the growth expected in Health Care information systems, the Federal Government is expected to need Information Security Analysts to protect cyber security on a national level.

Companies That Employ Information Security Analyst:

  • Financial Institutions
  • Insurance Agencies
  • Information
  • Computer Systems design organizations
  • Management of businesses

Traits of A Good Information Security Analyst:

  • Detail oriented
  • Analytical
  • Data-driven
  • Focused
  • Passion for technology

Bureau of Labor Statistics

About the Author

MikeMike Gdovin has been blogging about technology since 2006 on his blog, He has a Bachelor of Science degree in Electronic Media from Kutztown University with a minor in Journalism, Public Relations and Business. In addition to blogging about technology, Mike is a video producer, technology consultant and social media expert.