Cyber crime can devastate the financial stability of an organization and expose its intellectual property to severe security threats. Consider some of the following facts about cyber crime.
The global cost of cyber crime is expected to reach $6 trillion annually by 2021, according to cyber security management firm Cyber Observer. Cyber crimes affect major organizations and small businesses alike, with nearly 70% of business executives concerned about rising cyber security risks.
There may be more than 3.5 million unfilled cyber security jobs globally by 2021. Because of this shortage, the cyber intelligence analyst salary is quite competitive in comparison to other professions in the cyber defense field. Individuals who are pursuing an advanced degree in cyber security can often command even higher salaries.
What Does a Cyber Intelligence Analyst Do?
Cyber intelligence analysts conduct “all-source analysis, digital forensics and targeting to identify, monitor, assess and counter the threat posed by [criminal] cyber actors.” This is the definition found on the website of the U.S. Central Intelligence Agency (CIA).
Cyber intelligence analysts work for the government or corporations or as independent contractors. These professionals leverage their background in technology, science, mathematics and computer programming to impede criminals from accessing proprietary data.
Cyber intelligence analysts utilize threat intelligence to mitigate any potential data threats and defend data. Moreover, they compile reports that identify ways for their organizations to pinpoint and prepare for potential threats.
Cyber intelligence analysts must also have the expertise to identify an organization’s security vulnerabilities and pinpoint indicators of compromise (IOC) such as suspicious IP addresses, URLs, email addresses and attachments, registry keys and filenames. These IOCs could signify malware attacks, phishing attempts or attacks from external hosts.
The cyber intelligence analyst profession is fast paced. It also requires professionals to maintain a current knowledge on the voluminous amount and types of cyber threats that are developed daily. In some cases, analysts must think like cyber criminals to stay ahead of these digital threats, ensuring they can work to aggressively protect their employer’s data. It is also their responsibility to effectively communicate potential threats that could harm the growth, reputation and financial stability of an organization.
What Is a Cyber Intelligence Analyst Salary?
A cyber intelligence analyst salary is in the high range compared to other salaries in the general cyber security field. The average pay for a cyber intelligence analyst is $74,262, according to the compensation website PayScale. The top 10% of earners in this position make an average of $107,000.
A variety of factors can affect an individual’s overall salary. Cyber intelligence analysts with experience tend to command higher salaries than those just starting in the field. Moreover, individuals who work for corporations may make more than those working for the government. Cyber intelligence analysts with an advanced degree in cyber security may attain higher salaries and develop the necessary skills to become leaders in the field.
The Skills of a Cyber Intelligence Analyst
A successful career as a cyber intelligence analyst requires a variety of skills. The following skills are key.
- Analytical skills: Cyber intelligence analysts need analytical skills to identify data breaches or bad actors who are manipulating operating systems and destroying the functionality of a business.
- Technical skills: Cyber intelligence analysts should have a background in technology, mathematics, statistics, computer engineering, digital forensics or computer science. Most of these professionals have obtained at least a bachelor’s degree in the fields mentioned above.
- Communication skills: Cyber intelligence analysts must be able to communicate with executives, CTOs (chief technology officers) and IT departments to warn of possible risks to data and promote plans to mitigate those risks.
- Organizational skills: Organizational skills are vital to the success of effective cyber intelligence analysts as they identify new trends in cyber crime, plan risk mitigation efforts and perform meticulous data analysis and reporting.
Discover the Exciting Career of a Cyber Intelligence Analyst
Professionals who are interested in the cyber intelligence analyst salary and job description should consider an advanced degree in cyber security from University of North Dakota.
The school’s online Master of Science in Cyber Security offers a unique curriculum across four tracks: autonomous systems cyber security, cyber security and behavior, data security and general cyber security. Courses cover everything from applied cryptology to cognitive psychology to intrusion detection, depending on the track.
These programs enable students to hone their analytical skills and pursue leadership roles in the field of digital forensics. Students will also learn how to protect data and position their employers to defend against cyber crime.
Discover how the University of North Dakota’s online Master of Science in Cyber Security can prepare you for success in the field of cyber intelligence.