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Cyber security jobs are becoming increasingly popular in IT. Since cyber security is a relatively newer field, many have questions about it.  Read on to learn more about this exciting, expanding industry.

What is cyber security?

Computer hackers are everywhere, waiting for a chance to access, change, or destroy sensitive information. Hackers often also try to extort money from users and interrupt normal business processes. These attacks are prevented by cyber security professionals. Cybersecurity is the practice of protecting systems, networks, and programs from these digital attackers. Cyber security professionals utilize software and technology to help them protect against attacks. They also help educate people on the best security practices for keeping digital assets safe. 

How can I get a cyber security job?

The first step to getting a cyber security job is to familiarize yourself with information technology and cyber security practices. This is often done best by getting an IT degree, like computer science, cyber security, or information systems. Western Governors University has an online cybersecurity degree that can be perfect for those just starting out in the IT world. This degree will cover many IT basics, while giving specific training on cyber security. 

A bachelor’s degree is the obvious first place to start, and it can give you the basic skills and knowledge you need for an entry-level job in cyber security. You can then work your way up and continue to learn as you get experience. Often a master’s degree in cybersecurity can help propel your career. If you’ve reached a certain level in your career and are ready to move up, a degree is the perfect place to start. A master’s degree in cybersecurity demonstrates that you are ready to manage teams, make crucial decisions, and have the skills to innovate and progress an organization.

Whether you choose to pursue the bachelor’s or master’s degree in cybersecurity at WGU, you’ll have the opportunity to get cybersecurity certifications, which can help legitimize your training and give your more specific knowledge about programs or networks. Many employers are looking to fill cyber security jobs with an expert who can tackle many security systems, and learn new ones on the go.

What jobs can you get with a cyber security degree?

There are hundreds of cyber security jobs that are available for individuals with a cybersecurity degree. From security in the military, to private tech companies, the possibilities are endless. These days, most large companies require a cyber security professional to help protect their online programs and networks, so the industry you choose to work in can vary based on your skills and interest. Some job titles within the cyber security field include; security analyst, security architect, security software developer, cryptographer, forensics expert, vulnerability assessor, chief information security officer, and more.

How many hours do cyber security professionals work?

Most cyber security professionals spend roughly 40 hours a week in the office for full-time employment. However, during technology releases or program updates there are often longer hours required. Sometimes systems need updates or maintenance overnight, over weekends, etc. This requires that cyber security professionals sometimes have different hours than regular 9-5 workers. Cyber security professionals also may be required to be on-call to have consistent security against digital attackers. Work-from-home options are often available for these professionals as their work is primarily online, and often can be accomplished remotely. The work culture for cyber security jobs is often laid-back but with important, solid deadlines.

How much do cyber security jobs pay?

In fact, according to recent data, the median base salary of a cyber security professional in the U.S. is about $103,000 per year.  The longer professionals are in the field, or the higher degree and certifications they have, the more they were paid. Because cyber security is a growing field, the job outlook is fantastic.

What is the state of cyber security?

The Bureau of Labor Statistics says that security careers in tech will have a job growth of 31% over the next few years, which is much faster than most industries. Almost every industry requires a form of cyber security, so the need for good professionals will continue to exist in all kinds of companies. Now is the perfect time to get started on the job path toward cyber security as jobs are growing in every field.

Is a cyber security career a good choice?

So the bottom-line question remains, is cyber security a good career path to choose? With the easy access to education and certifications from institutions like Western Governors University, the good pay and work culture, and the ability to help protect organizations, the answer seems simple. YES, cyber security would be an excellent career field to pursue for many individuals.

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