Is a Masters in Cyber Security Worth It?

Like many other careers in the technology sector, cybersecurity is a job that you can start with nothing more than some professional certifications and a lot of practice. Entry-level jobs, at least; but if you plan to work as a cybersecurity analyst or technician in the corporate world, government, or finance, you’ll find you hit a ceiling quite quickly. Experience is helpful for promotion, but a higher degree – and the higher level of training and knowledge that comes with it – is a more reliable path to promotion and advancement.

So is a cyber security master’s worth it? That depends on how high up the ladder you want to go. A bachelor’s in cybersecurity with provide all of the technical knowledge you need, such as how to analyze and implement prevention measures and secure network applications that are useful for top corporations. But a master’s degree program enhances those skills and adds the leadership and managerial expertise you need to take on higher roles. Masters in cyber security jobs aren’t just the rank and file, but the leaders of projects, and master’s in cyber security salary makes the extra schooling – sometimes as little as a year – well worth it.

Masters in Cyber Security: Jobs and Careers

Security is one of the biggest concerns in the contemporary world – not just in business and finance, but in government, education, social media. Every field that uses computers – which means every field – requires cyber security. What you do in master’s in cyber security jobs depends on where you’re working and what level you’re working in. Some areas where cybersecurity experts are hired include:

  • Banking and Finance
  • E-Commerce
  • Education
  • Government agencies (local, state, and federal)
  • Law Enforcement
  • Research and Development

Because of imminent threats like hacking or downloading viruses, government agencies like Homeland Security were created to protect and prevent cyber-attacks. For private corporations, security officers or cyber crime investigators are commonly hired to protect and prevent attacks inside and outside the company. Masters in cyber security jobs are found at companies like AT&T and Google, along with agencies like the Department of Defense, NSA, and all branches of the military.

And those job titles can range widely, from Entry-Level Security Technician to Chief Security Officer. Guess which ones have the master’s degree? Other jobs include:

  • Digital Forensics
  • Penetration Testing
  • Security Administrator
  • Security Analyst
  • Security Architect
  • Security Auditor
  • Security Manager
  • Vulnerability Assessor

Cyber security professionals must have knowledge of information science, computer forensics, and application security, and their skills must be developed enough to be adaptable. Cybersecurity analysts can never stop learning, because new technology is constantly being developed to break defenses and wreak havoc.

Master’s in Cyber Security Salary Outlook

The cybersecurity masters salary is very lucrative. With a master’s in cyber security, salary expectations start high and get higher with experience and advancement. The average salary for Information Security Analysts is over $95,000 annually, according to the Bureau of Labor and Statistics. The highest 10%, though, make more than $153,000. For those in management, the median is an incredible $139,000, with the highest executives bringing in well over $200,000.

Bottom Line: Is a Cyber Security Master’s Worth it?

Cyber security professionals who go all the way to a master’s in cyber security will find that it is worth the education and effort that is put into it. A good master’s program in cyber security will give students confidence, build character, and help students with networking within the information technology field. The master’s in cyber security jobs they’ll be able to obtain will provide job opportunities that a bachelor’s won’t – and cybersecurity master’s salary is a great return on investment.

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