Network security and the relationship with information systems in organizations and businesses is both a vital part of the economy and security of much of the world.
As a result, a career in computer networking has quickly become a fast path to job security and leverage in pay. Some of the benefits of a computer networking career include:
• The ability to work with a variety of departments
• Incredible flexibility in job scope
• The ability to telecommute as needed
Network Security Administrator
Do you enjoy working with the inner-workings of protecting data? Are you research-oriented? A Network Security Administrator has the ability to influence policy and works with various types of software to monitor network traffic and ensure data integrity when systems go down. They also troubleshoot malfunctions in organizations and quickly become first responder when data is leaked or there is a security breach. This position serves a variety of functions, but most experts in this field will need to be aware of the latest security programs as well as laws regarding security.
Most positions require a bachelor's degree and according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, start out at roughly $69,000 per year. Many security administrators have a Cisco-backed certification such as the CCNA (Cisco Certified Networking Associate) or possibly the CCNP (Cisco Certified Networking Professional).
Computer Systems Analyst
A computer systems analyst takes an outward approach from security and focuses instead on the overall picture of how systems function as a whole. They maintain procedures to make sure organizations operate efficiently and match business needs with IT needs in the organization. In many ways, this job requires communication skills to work with a variety of people as well as the ability to understand any limitations there might be to up-sell a new system. Systems analysts have also grown in areas of "green" technology, further reducing the demands businesses have on energy consumption and creating cost-cutting measures in budgets.
The average starting pay for this position starts out at roughly $77,000. A bachelor's degree is recommended with a Master's degree in Information Science when dealing with much larger corporate environments.
Network Security Consultant
Sometimes in network security there may be issues that require a more in-depth approach. There may be ethical or legal issues that require an outside perspective. Network Security Consultants have grown in number over the years due to fraud and cybercrime. In many ways, this position works exclusively with law enforcement to ensure organizations are protected. White collar crimes have gone up exponentially in recent years and as a result, consultants have seen a boost in both job responsibilities and new opportunities. As a branch of cybercrime divisions, these consultants are also concerned with maintaining communication with all members of the computer networking team.
The median salary for this position is approximately $100,000 per year with a 27% job growth. An information systems security professional certification is preferred.
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