The role of an information security analyst is to create and execute security solutions to protect computer networks and systems of an organisation. They also use technologies to safeguard businesses from data leaks and cyberattacks.
A number of companies employ information security analysts, especially companies with data stored on the web. However, most information security analysts work in the tech industry, consulting firms, and financial companies.
Additionally, the information security analyst has since become a highly in-demand job due to the sensitive data stored electronically. People who find the concept of digital data intriguing may find the role very suitable for a career choice.
The career path also ranks among the top 20 best career paths in the US; a survey carried out using the following metrics as judgement:
- Future growth
- Job market
- Work balance and flexibility
- Stress level
The Bureau of Labor states that from 2020 to 2030, the employment of information security analysts will increase by 33%, substantially faster than the average for all occupations.
On average, 16,300 jobs for information security analysts are expected to be available each year over the next decade. Many of those positions are likely to be filled as a result of the need to replace people who change occupations or leave the labour market.
Many people use the terms information security analyst and cybersecurity interchangeably. However, both roles are distinctive, although they have some similarities in their job functions.
Information security analyst VS Cybersecurity analyst
Cybersecurity relates to the prevention of cyberattacks from unauthorised electronic sources. Information security, on the other hand, is concerned with the protection of data and information that might exist in both physical and electronic forms.
What Does an Information Security Analyst’s Role Entail?
Information security not only protects data and information, but they also carry out other roles related to the data and information of an organisation. These roles include:
- They recommend and develop various network security and efficiency strategies.
- They also perform compliance control testing.
- Information security analysts install and maintain firewalls or data encryption software.
- They also help users to install or learn about new security products and procedures.
- They perform compliance control testing.
- Use analytical skills to uncover holes in the digital security system of an organisation.
- They also collaborate with other team members and management within the company to implement best data security practices while training them.
Salary of an Information Security Analyst
According to Indeed, the average yearly salary for an information security analyst is $87649 in the United States. The salary potential may vary and is usually dependent on various factors, such as location, industry, experience, and education.
According to Payscale, entry-level security analysts earned an average yearly pay of $60,740 in January 2023. It reports that the average entry-level salary rises to $82,990 after 5–9 years of experience.
As of 2023, California remains the highest-paying state for information security analysts, with an average yearly income of $125,990.
The top-paying industries for information security analysts include internet shopping, information services, fintech, and electronic manufacturing.
How to become an Information Security Analyst
Typically, becoming an information security analyst necessitates a mix of education and experience.
A bachelor’s degree is often required for most careers as an information security analyst. Typically, a degree in computer science, information technology, cybersecurity, or even engineering or math is necessary. However, companies may prefer applicants with a degree in information systems.
Employers sometimes prefer applicants who have an MBA in information systems.
Others may, however, accept work experience as an alternate pathway. One of the many ways to gain experience is by acquiring relevant skills while looking for internships or volunteering positions that don’t call for specific degrees. You can work your way up to being an analyst from there. With a few years of experience under your belt, hiring managers may waive degree requirements.
Earning a security or network certification may provide you with a solid knowledge base in security concerns, including the credentials to land you a job.
However, if you are looking to grow into top positions, consider pursuing credentials like certified information systems security professional (CISSP), global information assurance certification (GIAC), or certified information systems auditor (CISA).
Technical Skills, Experience and Knowledge Employers Are Looking For
If you are looking to become an information security analyst, you should consider acquiring these skills employers are looking for:
- ISO 27001
- CISM Certification
- Application Security
- Vulnerability Management
- Experience in Security Technology
- Computer Security Experience
- CRISC Certification
- Network Security Experience
- Endpoint Security Experience
Soft Skills Employers Are Looking For
- Problem-Solving Skills
- Attention to Detailing Skills
- Communication skills
Other Career Paths for Information Security Analyst
Network architects are computer engineers who specialise in communication networks. Local area networks, company-wide networks, and cloud computing are examples of these systems. Their regular activities also include network design, data traffic analysis, and hardware upgrades. They also investigate network and information security problems.
Computer and information research scientists, often known as information researchers, are interested in innovative ideas in the sector. They might specialise in fields such as computing or robotics. These researchers come up with novel ways to enhance technology. Additionally, the federal government, scientific research and development, and computer system design are the three major employers of information researchers.
Network administrators maintain an organisation’s computer networks operational. They are in charge of local and wide area networks, including other data systems used by their firm. The network administrator also installs new systems, debugs issues, and upgrades systems. They occasionally train employees in technological jobs.
These professionals collaborate with top executives and departmental managers. Computer and information systems managers oversee an organisation’s big-picture tech decisions. They also have a thorough awareness of how an organisation operates, including the ability to find the best technologies to meet its requirements. They supervise employees, manage budgets, and collaborate with vendors.
Software developers create computer programs. These professionals focus on operating systems, software programs, or applications. They investigate what software their firm or the broader market may employ. They then create programs to address such requirements. During product development, they work with programmers and do frequent tests to ensure that the software works properly.