Employers, “The Industry,” and You: The 2019 Cyber Security Job Outlook

December 21, 2018 | Views: 17602

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If you’re new to the world of cyber security, you may be wondering what the “2019 (and beyond)” job outlook holds. Or, if you’ve been in the cyber security space for a few years, you might also be wondering could be down the road of your career path. After all, who doesn’t want to know what the future has in store regarding employment and salaries?

An article by Dark Reading published earlier this year states that “Cybercrime damages are predicted to cost the world $6 trillion annually by 2021, according to the ‘Cybercrime Report’ by the editors at Cybersecurity Ventures. That’s up from $3 trillion in 2015, which is fueling a burgeoning market, with cyber security spending expected to reach more than $1 trillion cumulatively from 2017 to 2021.”

The article goes on to note a familiar stat: in 2014 there were 1 million unfilled cyber security jobs globally, according to Cisco. However, did you know that by 2021, that number will grow to 3.5 million openings? And, more tough news for companies indicates that the labor crunch has intensified over the past year, with more than 200 cybersecurity startups raising venture capital — much of that intended for new hires. It also seems that VC funding shows no signs of slowing in the foreseeable future.

Additionally, the Investing News Network put together Top 10 Cybersecurity Companies in the US, which are listed below. These are the powerhouses in the industry employing a large number of workers, and there are thousands more cyber companies and other companies throughout the world offering opportunities to future employees:

10. BAE Systems
9. Symantec
8. Check Point Software
7. Lockheed Martin
6. FireEye
5. Amazon (Amazon Web Services)
4. Microsoft
3. IBM
2. Cisco
1. CyberArk Software

Where does all this information leave you – the cyber security job seeker? Read on to find out. I hope this information serves you well – and don’t forget to share it with your loved ones. It could make a great gift!

Let’s examine four cyber security job categories for the 2019 Job Outlook: SOC Analyst, Penetration Tester, Network Engineer, and Cyber Security Engineer.

SOC Analyst
Quick Summary: Information security analysts (or security operations center analysts) plan and carry out security measures to protect computer networks and systems. Their responsibilities continue to expand as the number of cyber attacks increases.

Job Outlook: Employment of information security analysts is projected to grow 28 percent from 2016 to 2026, much faster than the average for all occupations. Demand for information security analysts is expected to be very high as analysts will need to create innovative solutions to prevent malicious intruders from stealing critical information or causing problems for computer networks.

Projected Median Pay: $95,510 per year or $45.92 per hour (USD)

Extra Info > The Myers-Briggs Type for many SOC Analysts is Introverted-Intuitive-Thinking-Judging (INTJ)

Penetration Tester
Quick Summary: A penetration tester creates scripts and uses knowledge and experience to find vulnerabilities in corporate networks, applications and internal systems. Penetration testers also use out-of-the-box applications that automate testing.

Job Outlook: Employment of penetration testers (which are classified with information security analysts) is projected to grow 28 percent from 2016 to 2026, much faster than the average for all occupations. Demand for penetration tester is expected to be very high as testers will need to create innovative solutions to look for whole where malicious intruders could enter a network or other system and attempt to steal critical information or causing problems for computer networks.

Projected Median Pay: $95,510 per year or $45.92 per hour (USD)

Extra Info > Seven Characteristics of a Good Penetration Tester: Good grasp of operating systems and networks; Always up-to-date in technology knowledge; Analytical and meticulous; Enjoys a good challenge; Great communicator; Social engineering skills; A passion for cybersecurity

Network Engineer
Quick Summary: Network engineers make and maintain network systems that all employees in the organization will use. This role involves many tasks and responsibilities that can vary, depending on the specific organization.

Job Outlook: The growth of about six percent is expected in the employment of network engineers, from 2016 to 2026. The demand for network engineers has increased over the last decade as companies have expanded their IT networks. Designing new networks or upgrading current ones will continue to create new opportunities for network engineers. Additionally, the increase in healthcare information technology will further add to network engineering opportunities.

Projected Median Pay: $104,650 per year or 52.32 per hour (USD)

Extra Info > Top Five Movies for Engineers: 5. Tron; 4. Sphere; 3. The Social Network; 2. October Sky; 1. Apollo 13

Cyber Security Engineer
Quick Summary: Cyber Security Engineers often plan, coordinate, and direct computer-related activities in an organization. They help determine the information technology goals of an organization and are responsible for implementing computer systems to meet those goals.

Job Outlook: Employment of cyber security engineers is projected to grow 12 percent from 2016 to 2026, faster than the average for all occupations. Demand for cyber security engineers will grow as firms increasingly expand their businesses using digital platforms.

Projected Median Pay: $139,220 per year or $66.93 per hour (USD)

Extra Info > Good advice for Cyber Security Engineers (and everyone else in cyber security): “Have fun with the work and don’t try to learn everything all at once.”

Growth continues to be promising in the world of cyber security, so keep pursuing your dreams and studying hard. And, with all of this being said, remember that the cyber security industry is still in its infancy compared to many other industries, so you may hit a few bumps in the road as you search for work. Remember to stay focused on the positive and use your skills to create a more peaceful world.

Top Cyber Security Companies
Dark Reading – Moving to Cyber
BLS.gov Info Security Analyst
Career Assessment Myers-Briggs Test
InfosecInstitute.com Pentester Jobs
Coresentinel.com Pentesting
Engineering.com Top Movies for Engineers
BLS.gov Managers
Medium.com Threat Intelligence

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  1. The encouraging words at the end of this article inspire me to never give up in pursuing a career in this industry. I have not only enjoyed reading your article but I have learned a lot, especially the fact that the demand for each job title is going to be on the rise as the years progress. Thank you.

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