Incidents of stolen identities, hacked emails and even uses of ransomware have become common headlines. As organized hacking groups increase their capacity to damage and manipulate computer systems around the world, private businesses and governments have increased countermeasures though cyber security programs. As these cyber threats rise, a looming shortage raises questions about private and public infrastructure preparedness for cyberattacks.
A Shortage of Cyber Security Personnel
Last year, the Information Systems Audit and Control Association (ISACA) projected a global shortage of two million cyber security professionals by 2019. The shortage comes at a time when the cost of cybercrime is rising for businesses. A 2017 article in Financial Times said that the cost of providing cyber security for companies across the world rose 22.7 percent over the preceding year, mainly due to a "rising number of security breaches." The number of breaches rose by 27.4 percent, according to a report cited in the article. That report was based on 2,182 interviews conducted at 254 companies in seven countries.
Every year in the United States, 40,000 jobs for information security analysts go unfilled, and employers are struggling to fill 200,000 other cyber-security related roles, according to the online security data tool CyberSeek.
Careers in Cyber Security
A 2017 article in Forbes highlighted potential careers within cyber security. Security analysts work to prevent and mitigate breaches of company computer systems. The job has increased in the number of openings and average salary. In 2015, there were 88,880 analysts with a median salary of $90,120, according to the article. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts that job openings for information security analysts will grow by 28 percent between 2016 and 2026 in order to "create innovative solutions to prevent hackers from stealing critical information or causing problems for computer networks."
Security managers develop and implement policies and procedures to keep company information private. The average pay for security managers is $64,814 per year, according to PayScale. Senior positions, such as chief information security officer, can pay upwards of $400,000 per year. A 2015 study by the analytics firm Burning Glass showed that cyber security professionals garnered a $6,500 premium per year or 9 percent more than other IT jobs.
Additional careers in the field include cyber security researcher, information security professor, information privacy scientist, chief technology officer and VP of cyber security strategy.
Beyond holding a Master of Business Administration in cyber security management or a related field, many of these positions require certifications, including the Certified Information Security Manager or Certified Information Systems Security Professional.
STU's Online MBA in Cyber Security Management
An MBA in Cyber Security Management from STU provides a comprehensive understanding of cyber security management while equipping students with the tools to protect an organization's technology assets. The program incorporates current industry practices while giving a global perspective on cyber security. Students can complete the online program in as few as 18 months.
As the costs of data breaches increase year to year, companies will increasingly need qualified cyber security professionals with the skills to combat online security threats today and in the future.
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