What Can You Do With A Cyber Security Degree

Alyssa Omandac

What Can You Do With A
Cyber Security Degree

A Cyber Security degree is a specialized discipline within the Computer Science field. It focuses on security measures for protecting computer systems and networks from malicious attacks, theft, or damage.

Cyber Security students learn how to protect against cyber attacks and how to monitor systems for potential hacks. Classes include basic data analysis, programming, cryptography, computer networking, and system administration. Students also explore the policies and ethics related to Cyber Security practices.

Cyber Security experts are in high demand, due to the growing reliance on Internet-connected systems in virtually every industry. Bachelor’s degrees in Cybersecurity open the doors to a wide range of cybersecurity jobs. Students may choose to become Security Administrators for large organizations or Cryptographers for software development companies.

Typical employers for Cyber Security graduates

Tech Companies
Law Enforcement Agencies
Software Development Companies
Non-Profit Organizations

IT Consultancy Firms
Banks and Financial Institutions
Government Agencies

11 Career Options

  1. Information Security Analyst
  2. What they do

    Information Security Analysts monitor computer network systems to protect against security breaches. They protect systems by updating software, installing firewalls, and implementing various security measures and practices. Information Security Analysts are also responsible for documenting security breaches and developing new security standards for their organization. Find out more about what is it like working as an Information Security Analyst.

    How to become one

    Employers typically hire Information Security Analysts with at least a Bachelor’s Degree in Computer Science or a related field. Previous work experience is also necessary. Many Information Security Analysts first obtain jobs in IT departments, working as Network Administrators or IT Specialists. There are also many Information Security certifications available that may increase employability, such as the Certified Information Systems Security Professional (CISSP) certification.

    How much they make


  3. IT Security Architect
  4. What they do

    IT Security Architects help maintain the security of computer network systems for their employers. This job involves assessing and improving network systems. IT Security Architects must first determine the weaknesses of the system and then develop new security measures to increase protection against malware and cyberattacks. Find out more about what is it like working as an IT Security Architect.

    How to become one

    IT Security Architects usually need a Bachelor’s Degree in Computer Science, Engineering, Information Systems, or a related field. This job also typically requires several years of experience, as it is an advanced position within the IT industry. Security Architects often have experience as System Administrators or Computer Systems Analysts.

    How much they make


  5. Security Systems Administrator
  6. What they do

    A Security Systems Administrator helps companies improve their internal network security procedures. As with other Cyber Security roles, the Security Systems Administrator also detects weaknesses in the company’s computer systems and provides recommendations for preventing cyberattacks. Job duties include defending systems against unauthorized access and performing penetration tests.

    How to become one

    The educational requirements vary but most employers require a Bachelor’s Degree in a relevant field. Some employers may accept a postsecondary certification in Network Administration or an Associate’s Degree in Computer Science. Companies also tend to require Security Systems Administrators to obtain certification in the products that they use. Most certifications in this field come from Microsoft or Cisco.

    How much they make


  7. Penetration Tester
  8. What they do

    A Penetration Tester is a specialized Cyber Security job that focuses on the discovery of exploits and weaknesses in computer systems and software. This job involves attempting to break into or hack systems and software using the same techniques employed by hackers. Penetration Testers perform tests to detect vulnerabilities as part of a security audit.

    How to become one

    Many Penetration Tester positions require a Bachelor’s Degree or Master’s Degree in Computer Science or Cybersecurity. These jobs also tend to require previous experience in the IT industry, such as System Administration, Network Engineering, or Security Administration. Penetration Testers can increase their career prospects by obtaining certification through one of the many certifying bodies in this field.

    How much they make


  9. Security Software Developer
  10. What they do

    A Security Software Developer creates security software for businesses and public agencies to protect their systems against cyberattacks. Security Software Developers may create general software or custom solutions for clients. When designing software for clients, Developers may perform security audits to improve the effectiveness of the software.

    How to become one

    The requirements for becoming a Security Software Developer vary. However, most employers tend to hire candidates with at least a Bachelor’s Degree in Computer Science, Network Security, or Cybersecurity. Work experience is also critical with most employers preferring candidates with several years as a regular Software Developer. Some employers may also require security auditing work experience.

    How much they make


  11. Security Engineer
  12. What they do

    Security Engineers design computer systems and networks to reduce the risk of cyberattacks. They may work for businesses or IT security firms. The Security Engineer develops the infrastructure used by organizations to run essential software. They are also responsible for testing and screening software, monitoring networks, and developing new security standards and practices.

    How to become one

    You should first obtain a Bachelor’s Degree in Computer Science or Cybersecurity. As with many Cybersecurity roles, you need relevant work experience before becoming a Security Engineer. Many Engineers start as Database, Security, or Network Administrators. With at least two years of experience, you should be able to seek employment as a Security Engineer.

    How much they make


  13. Chief Information Security Officer
  14. What they do

    A Chief Information Security Officer (CISO) is a Cyber Security executive responsible for the overall data security of an organization. This is a managerial position that involves directing other IT professionals and meeting with upper management to deliver updates on data security issues. The CISO is the person in charge of monitoring security operations and conducting real-time analysis of cyber threats.

    How to become one

    The Chief Information Security Officer (CISO) position is an advanced position that typically requires at least 7 to 10 years of IT security experience. You will also likely need a Bachelor’s Degree in a related field and Certified Authorization Professional (CAP) certification, which requires at least two years of work experience.

    How much they make


  15. Cyber Security Consultant
  16. What they do

    A Cyber Security Consultant or IT Security Consultant works independently or with a consultancy firm to address the security needs of clients. The main job duties of a Cybersecurity Consultant include assessing software and computer systems for vulnerabilities, often using penetration testing and detailed security audits. They provide recommendations to their clients based on the findings of their testing and audits.

    How to become one

    The path to becoming a Cybersecurity Consultant involves multiple steps. You must first earn a Bachelor’s Degree in Computer Science, Cybersecurity, or a related field. You can then seek an entry-level Cybersecurity job, such as Security Administrator. After gaining employment in the IT industry, continue to advance your training and earn new IT certifications, especially certifications related to Network Security. With suitable real-world experience, you can start consulting as a Cybersecurity professional.

    How much they make


  17. Computer Forensic Examiner
  18. What they do

    Computer Forensic Examiners gather, analyze, and present evidence obtained from computers and digital devices. They often work with law enforcement agencies to gather evidence of computer crimes such as electronic fraud or identity theft. They may also be required to recover data from computers or phones belonging to defendants in criminal cases.

    How to become one

    A Bachelor’s Degree is typically needed to become a Computer Forensic Examiner. However, some aspiring Computer Forensic Examiners choose to earn an Associate’s Degree in Computer Forensic before transferring to a four-year college or university to earn a Bachelor’s Degree. After graduation, you need to become certified as a GIAC Certified Forensic Analyst (GCFA).

    How much they make


  19. Security Auditor
  20. What they do

    An IT Security Auditor performs security audits to ensure that an organization’s computer networks and systems follow internal policies and governmental regulations. They may also perform audits to detect potential weaknesses and help to identify risks. After performing an audit, a Security Auditor typically provides a detailed summary of their findings and recommendations.

    How to become one

    Employers typically seek candidates with at least a Bachelor’s Degree in Computer Science or a related field and several years of experience. You may need to start with an entry-level Cybersecurity position such as a Security Administrator. This can lead to a job as a Security Specialist or Analyst. After obtaining this experience, you may pursue a career as an IT Security Auditor.

    How much they make


  21. Cyber Security Specialist
  22. What they do

    Cyber Security Specialists are responsible for developing and implementing effective security measures for their employers. They implement firewalls and software to protect against cyber security threats. Job duties include analyzing existing security procedures, developing new security solutions, and reporting to upper management to address potential security issues.

    How to become one

    Most employers prefer to hire Cyber Security Specialists with a Bachelor’s Degree in Computer Science or a related field, such as Cyber Security. However, some employers may hire individuals who have completed certification programs through Technical Schools or Community Colleges. Advanced positions often require industry certification, such as credentials offered through the International Information Systems Security Certification Consortium (ISC2).

    How much they make