Security Analyst Jobs: A Complete Guide

Career Advice
security analyst working on the computer
security analyst working on the computer
minute read

Do you enjoy the idea of stopping cyber-attackers and providing peace of mind to customers and companies that their personal information is secure? Security information analyst jobs are in high demand. What do information security analysts do? Keep reading to learn more.

In This Article:

What Do Information Security Analysts Do?

Key Responsibilities for a Security Analyst

Skills and Qualifications Needed by a Security Analyst

How to Become Information Security Analyst: Education & Experience

What to Expect from Information Technology Analyst Jobs

Summing It Up

With the collection of data at an all-time high, there’s an ongoing need for top-notch cybersecurity—and companies know this. Enter information security analysts — a highly sought-after role with a strong career path and opportunities for growth. According to U.S. News & World Report’s Money section, security information analyst jobs are among the top 5 roles in technology right now—and for good reason. People in this profession help safeguard data, protecting both customers and companies from costly breaches.

Wondering how to become an information security analyst? Here’s what you need to know about pursuing a successful, thriving career in this sector, including the job description for the information technology security analyst, the degree for information security analyst, the average information technology security analyst salary, and more.

<h2 id="what-information-security-analysts-do">What Do Information Security Analysts Do?</h2>

Read a security information analyst job description, and you'll see that the information and security analyst plays a key role in keeping companies’ valuable and proprietary data safe from online dangers such as cyberattacks and data breaches. This includes the types of personal and private details that customers are highly concerned about, such as bank account numbers, usernames, personal identification codes, and passwords. It can also include proprietary data that companies want to keep in-house, such as trademarked information and intellectual property, as well as employee information and more. These vital pieces of information are tempting for thieves to steal, and the information technology security analyst focuses on tasks that prevent cyber criminals from doing their dirty work.

To keep all this valuable data safe, information security analyst jobs require you to keep a close watch on the risks, vulnerabilities, dangers and incidents that can expose private data to bad actors. As a security information analyst, you will leverage your technical expertise to bear as they monitor and manage their company’s online security systems to prevent cyber threats. As part of your information security analyst job duties, you will install and maintain firewalls, create and oversee encryption software, analyze areas where an organization’s network may be vulnerable to attack, and investigate data breaches.

<h2 id="key-responsibilities">Key Responsibilities for a Security Analyst</h2>

To learn how to become an information security analyst, it helps to understand the duties involved. The information technology security analyst is, in a sense, like a high-tech bodyguard for an organization when it comes to data and information. In order to carry out their role, security analysts focus on determining the possible risks to the company’s assets, so that those assets can be properly protected. This role assesses the company’s security system, puts protective systems in place, and creates plans for what to do if a cyber breach occurs. 

So, what do information security analysts do? As a security analyst, you can expect your job responsibilities to involve a variety of analytical tasks and assessments that contribute to online security. In carrying out your information security analyst job duties, expect to:

Manage the systems that protect sensitive information

To keep data safely private (as it should be!), security analysts hinder the risks of online threats. They identify the sensitive corporate information that needs protection (like customer data, employee information, passwords, IDs, financial details, and more). You’ll install, maintain, and keep up-to-date various data security programs, such as encryption software, to make it harder for criminals to obtain valuable information. 

Identify vulnerabilities and risks in the organization’s online spaces

In addition, the security analyst oversees access to the system to ensure it is used only by those who have a right to do so. Security analysts perform regular, comprehensive tests to check their company’s overall tech system for vulnerabilities. This includes looking for any and all possible weaknesses in the system—before cyberhackers can take advantage of them. You’ll assess possible risks in hardware, software, and network infrastructure, all of which can be potential doors for exploitation. As a security analyst, you’ll also collaborate with third-party vendors to be sure their systems meet your company’s security requirements.

Establish plans to address vulnerabilities

Once issues are found, information and cyber security analysts evaluate and prioritize the level of risk that different vulnerabilities present. They identify security gaps and develop clear, actionable plans to handle the risks. This includes installing necessary patches, updating equipment, implementing better physical and software security measures, and similar tasks, as well as monitoring these plans to be sure they’re effective. Part of this work may entail helping fellow employees to be aware of good security protocols.

Investigate data breaches

Should a security breach occur, the information and security analyst is responsible for digging into the problem to find the root cause of the incident. This involves assessing what happened in detail, how it occurred, and what specific data was compromised. Once the source of the vulnerability is pinned down, an analysis is produced with the details of what failed and how, so that new cyber security measures can be instituted to avoid future breaches.

<h2 id="skills-and-qualifications">Skills and Qualifications Needed by a Security Analyst</h2>

If you're wondering how to become an information security analyst, keep reading! Security analysts require strong, deep technical knowledge to draw upon as they identify security vulnerabilities, triage risks, and investigate breaches. It helps to have an information security analyst degree to help with incident response. You’ll need a solid understanding of information security principles and practices, and be proficient in the use of cybersecurity tools and technologies. To pinpoint risks and prevent data theft, you’ll rely on superb analytical skills and be adept at problem-solving. A love of ethical hacking is a plus. Willingness to stay up-to-date and learn all you can is a good quality to have. And since information security analysts must work with others, both internally and outside third parties, to maintain data safety, you’ll also need good communication skills, a strong appreciation for teamwork, and openness to collaboration.

<h2 id="education-and-experience">How to Become Information Security Analyst: Education & Experience</h2>

If you’re interested in how to become an information security analyst, getting an information security analyst degree that trains you well in technologies, policies, and protocols is a good place to start. Continuing to learn about your area of expertise is key, because online threats are always evolving, and you’ll need to stay in-the-know about everything that can pose a risk for your organization.

Information Security Analyst Degree to Pursue

Open roles in the field of security analysis typically require a bachelor's degree in areas of study such as computer science, information technology, information systems, cybersecurity or a similar related area. Depending on the employer and the level of the role you’re pursuing, a master’s degree in information security or a related field may also be necessary.

Certifications and ongoing continuing professional development

As a certified information security analyst, you will stand out. It can be useful to pursue any relevant certification for information security analyst you come across. Popular and respected certifications for security analysts include the Certified Information Systems Security Professional (CISSP), Certified Ethical Hacker (CEH), and Certified Information Security Manager (CISM). Beyond that, you’ll want to stay up-to-date to the latest trends in information security through continuing education programs and professional development groups.

Relevant Experience

In addition to strong training, real-life experience in maintaining security, analyzing risks, and identifying the causes of security incidents will help you stand out as an information and security analyst candidate. If you’re new to the field, look for internships and entry-level positions that help you put your skills to work. There’s nothing like practical experience in information security or a related position to give you a leg up and allow you to earn the highest information security analyst salary you can.

<h2 id="what-to-expect">What to Expect from Information Technology Analyst Jobs</h2>

Because data security is such an essential and increasingly needed skill in the digital landscape, the opportunities for growth as a security analyst are significant. The potential for employers is vast, and you can find opportunities for this role in just about any industry that relies on data. Popular sectors for the information security analyst position include those that manage large amounts of data and are therefore targets of cyber criminals – such as healthcare, financial organizations, educational institutions, and e-commerce sites.

Growth potential

This area of tech is expected to expand and open up new roles by more than 31% between now and 2032, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. So, what about the information technology security analyst salary?

Information Security Analyst Salary

The potential for a strong information technology security analyst salary is impressive. Information security analyst job duties earn at least $50 per hour, with the average salary for the security information analyst hovering around $100,000 or more. It’s a role that has strong opportunities for promotion and growth, paired with an ability to work in hybrid and remote circumstances.

<h2 id="summing-up">The Security Information Analyst: Summing It Up</h2>

With cyberattacks growing ever more common and problematic, the need for tech experts who can proactively protect that data is greater than ever. Security analysis is an excellent choice for tech-minded individuals who want a long-lasting, lucrative career in the technology field helping to stop hackers from doing their worst.

Security Analyst roles often fit into a remote or hybrid environment, making this area of technology a great option if your goal is to work from anywhere. Discover the latest security analyst positions in Tulsa by visiting our Careers site. And remember, the inTulsa team is ready and excited to help you find your new career in Tulsa.