With the steady increase in cybersecurity threats against businesses, it's no surprise that a recent survey found that two-thirds of firms were increasing cybersecurity spending. For 30 percent of those businesses, the increase included hiring a chief security officer. That's not the only information security role benefiting from increased awareness and increased preventive efforts. For all levels of information security professionals, this increased demand is resulting in increased pay.
Not surprisingly, senior, executive, and other leadership information security jobs have the highest salaries. The Chief Information Security Officer (CISO) is a C-level role with the ultimate authority over all of a firm's information security efforts. Besides strong understanding of the technical aspects of information security, they have the management and political skills to influence corporate policy.
The security director makes sure security procedures are effectively implemented and also oversees the company response to any incidents. Security managers are mid-level managers with responsibility for managing teams of security administrators and supervising the technical work of the security team.
Security consultants have specialized technical expertise in specific aspects of security or specific tools, and work with companies on a short-term basis to solve specific problems.
Security architects are hands-on, senior-level employees who design the policies and protocols to protect the company's systems. They have both technical skills and business skills to perform risk assessments. A security engineer implements the designs created by the security architect. These engineers have detailed knowledge of specific tools such as firewalls and intrusion prevention software.
An incident responder leaps into action when a security breach occurs. During the calmer periods, when they are not acting to contain a crisis, they may participate in penetration tests, audits, and other procedures to verify the network is secure. A computer forensics expert helps retrieve data and collect other evidence as part of criminal proceedings associated with security breaches. A malware analyst helps companies find and remove any viruses, worms, and other malicious software from its systems.
The entry-level role in information security is often as a security specialist, who analyzes security needs, and installs and configures security solutions.
All of these security jobs have substantial salaries that correspond to the job responsibilities. Even entry-level security specialists can earn low six figures. Those in senior roles, particularly as CISO or security director in a smaller company, can achieve significantly greater salaries as reward for protecting the company's vital, valuable information assets.