Information Security Officer Careers

INFO Security in black against white background

The information technology program of any organization is handled and protected by Information Security Officers. The IT department of an organization is the most vulnerable and needs Information Security Officers to safeguard the system from internal and external attacks.  These officers are responsible for setting the protocols to identify and countervail the possible threats. They maintain anti-virus software to chunk the threats. They are the ones to decide which software is the most suitable for the organization. The also facilitate the training for the employees to minimize threat.

The Role of Information Security Officer in Criminal Justice and Law

English: The Information Security triad: CIA. ...
English: The Information Security triad: CIA. Second version (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The organizations store all the important information like bank and personal details of employees and clients in their computer system. The data is highly confidential. Hence it needs to be protected by the Information Security Officers. They safeguard all the vulnerable information stored in the computer network. The information security analysts have a key role to play like in Marine Corps as a security technician and information assurance technician, In the Air force for cyber surety and cyber systems operations, In Army as military intelligence systems maintainer and cryptologic network welfare specialist and in Navy for information welfare.

The Information Security Officers are also called Information Security Managers or Information System Manager. They investigate into the matters when the Information Technology system of the organization has been attacked. They take necessary actions for resolving the matter. It is an office job. The officers need to sit for long hours. Some employers hire full time security analysts who work for up to 40 hours a week while some prefer analysts available on call to attend emergencies. Whatever working hours one works for, this job has low stress level, is extremely flexible and offers great prospects for improvement and promotion.

Educational Requirements to Become an Information Security Officer

A Bachelor’s degree in mathematics, computer programming, computer science, computer engineering or similar field is a minimum qualification required to become an Information Security Officer. Some organizations prefer bachelor’s degree in business management specialized in Information technology. Some employers even prefer Management degree in the same field and having a master’s degree is an added advantage as it helps in promotion.

The Technology and threats change rapidly so the Information Security Managers need to keep themselves updated with the current ones. So they need to undergo regular trainings and education programs for advanced technology certifications for being more competent in the employment. The knowledge and proficiency of the Information Security Officers are validated by certifications.

An experience in a position related to computer like network administrator, computer technician or system administrator.

Preparation for a Career as an Information Security Officer

Institute of Information Security
Institute of Information Security (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Aspirants for a career in information security must be good trouble-shooters and must possess strong analytical thinking ability. The analysts must also possess strong communication skills as they need to communicate with upper management to explain their security plans and discuss security issues. Public speaking skills help them in imparting training sessions and conducting meetings. Apart from having strong technical skills, the candidates must have strong communication skills, leadership skills and conflict management skills. They must be team players as what they do is a team work and not one-man-show.

Aspirants to info security must hone their technical skills in penetration and vulnerability testing (IDS/IPS), computer networking, switching and routing (TCP/IP), firewall prevention protocol, anti-virus (DLP), Windows, UNIX and LINUX OS, C, C#, C++, java or PHP programming, SaaS models, cloud computing and Security Information and Event Management (SIEM).

The interview for the job of Information Security Officer is not a cake walk for sure. The interviewers put a series of technical questions to make sure the candidate is highly skilled.

How to Apply for a Position as an Information Security Officer

The interested candidates have various options to apply. If the aspirants hold the relevant degree and required work experience, they can apply for the job online. Create account on the relevant websites. Keep searching for the positions. Fill up the application forms very carefully and upload the documents and resume with utmost care.

Every department these days depends on computer for various task. Local government and federal government agencies, retail stores, banks, school, college and universities, hospitals, etc. have a computer set up and database which needs to be protected. These days all businesses are adopting cloud services but don’t have their personal IT departments. Hence the requirement of Information Security Analysts is always there.

Additional Information Related to a Career as an Information Security Officer.

The Information Security Officer possibly get job titles like Information Security Officer, Information Security Analyst or Information Security Investigator. The job of Information Security Analyst is one of the top-ranked jobs. It ranks 7th in the best Technology jobs, 19th in the best STEM jobs and 52nd the 100 best jobs.

Average Salary of an Information Security Officer

2008 Taichung IT Month: Information Industry I...
2008 Taichung IT Month: Information Industry Institute – Information Security Area. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The Information Security Officers earn a handsome remuneration. As stated by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the officers earn up to $90,120 per annum. The top officers earn more than $143,770 per annum. The salary range depends on the candidate’s experience, education and the sector in which he or she is employed. The employment growth rate is expected to grow by 18% by 2024, which is higher than the growth rate of any other occupations. The information technology sector is expansive therefore the demand for information security analysts is high as they prevent the data from being hacked or stolen by possible hackers.

As per BLS reports, California,  San Jose, New York city, New Jersey, Washington DC and Newark  are highest paying cities for Information Security Officers. The security analysts who work for government or healthcare sectors earn better than those working for other sectors.

Notes

Information Security Officers should obtain Certified Information systems Security Professionals (CISSP), Certified Information Systems Auditor (CISA), and Certified Information Security Manager (CISM) as these are recognized globally. It certifies the candidates on cryptography, risk management, access control, and information security governance and operations security.

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