IT Security Analyst Job Description, Skills, and Salary
Get to know about the duties, responsibilities, qualifications, and skills requirements of an IT Security Analyst. You can use our job description template in this article to produce your own. We also provide you with information about the salary you can earn as an IT Security Analyst.
Who is an IT Security Analyst?
The IT security analyst is an important member of the information technology department team. Individuals in this position assist organizations in taking steps to protect sensitive and critical data. The analyst helps develop, implement and enforce policies to protect the organization’s data from inappropriate access and use.
Excellent technical skills are essential for the IT security analyst to recognize and take action to prevent attacks on data security. These attacks may come from inside or outside the organization.
The general duties of this position include creating plans to prevent malicious or unintended use of data, creating emergency use plans, training users in security measures, and controlling access to data. In addition to these responsibilities, a data analyst may be responsible for researching information about viruses and providing protection against them. They may be asked to assess the risks of data exposure and also confirm that security systems are installed and functioning as intended. The analyst may act as an expert on application development project teams to ensure that the application meets the organization’s information security standards.
The job description for an IT security analyst may include the need for expertise in the technology of the systems used by the employing organization. Some organizations may require several years of experience. Additional requirements that an organization may find desirable are a four-year degree in a technical field, experience in network and systems administration, and programming experience.
When discussing security issues with non-technical personnel, the analyst must be able to make technical concepts understandable to a broad audience. A good understanding of an organization’s business will help the analyst to work more effectively, as it is useful to understand the information that is important to the organization’s mission and most likely to need protection.
Individuals interested in working as IT security analysts should be prepared to keep abreast of technological developments that affect the field of information security. In addition, the analyst must keep abreast of trends in attacks, such as viruses and hacks. Also, legal requirements in the field of information security are likely to change, so the analyst must also be aware of regulatory requirements.
IT Security Analyst Job Description
Below are the IT Security Analyst job description examples you can use to develop your resume or write a job description for your employee. Employers can also use it to sieve out job seekers when choosing candidates for interviews.
The duties and responsibilities of an IT Security Analyst include the following:
- Upgrading systems to include security software
- Installing and updating anti-virus software
- Testing and evaluating new technologies
- Performing penetration testing
- Analyzing IT needs and providing objective recommendations on the use of IT security requirements
- Gathering end-user feedback to improve systems.
- Developing, analyzing, and implementing effective IT security systems
- Monitoring computer networks for security problems.
- Investigating security breaches and other cyber security incidents.
- Documenting security breaches and assessing the damage they have caused.
- Working with the security team to test and identify network vulnerabilities.
- Correcting disclosed vulnerabilities to maintain a high level of security.
- Keeping abreast of trends and news in IT security.
- Helping colleagues install security software and understand information security management.
- Researching security improvements and making recommendations to management.
- Suggesting methods to improve security to management or IT staff.
- Conducting internal and external security audits.
- Thoroughly analyze security problems to identify the root cause.
- Checking that third-party suppliers meet security requirements.
- Guiding recreational computer users when they want to learn about security procedures.
- Researching the latest security technologies best suited to protect your organization.
Most IT security analysts obtain some level of education and then gain experience in the field to find a job. They usually obtain certifications and develop a set of skills necessary to succeed in the job.
IT security analysts generally require a bachelor’s degree in a field such as a computer science, information technology, programming, or computer engineering. Some employers prefer to hire IT security analysts with a master’s degree. A Master’s degree in information systems takes two years to complete and includes courses in business, management, and programming.
IT security analysts acquire most of their training through university courses, internships, and on-the-job training. Most analysts have experience in IT-related positions such as network technician, computer technician, or help desk analyst.
Students may complete an internship during their course. An internship allows them to gain practical experience in their chosen field. During an internship, a student can also make valuable contacts with IT professionals who can help them find a job after graduation.
Although certifications are not mandatory, they can provide IT security analysts with more job opportunities and earning potential. Information security certifications include:
- Certified Information Systems Security Professional
CISSP is an internationally recognized qualification for IT security analysts with at least five years of experience. Qualified analysts must pass an exam and complete 40 hours of continuing education per year to remain certified. Those who wish to acquire an additional specialization can take another exam to add one of three specializations: architecture, design, or management.
- Certified Ethical Hacker
CEH certification shows that information security professional understands how to find weaknesses in a system and protect themselves from hackers. Candidates must complete a training course and pass an exam to receive this certificate.
- Global information Analyst Certification
There are 30 specializations for all levels of experience, from cyber defense to incident response. You can choose a GIAC certification that matches your skills and career goals, then prepare for and take the exam.
Problem-solving is the ability to identify and solve problems. As an IT security analyst, you may need to solve technical problems with computer systems or software. For example, if the firewall is not working properly, you can troubleshoot it by examining logs, checking system settings, and identifying possible causes of the problem.
- Network security
Network security is the protection of computer systems and data from unauthorized access. IT security analysts use their knowledge of network security to assess an organization’s existing security measures, identify potential vulnerabilities and develop strategies to improve overall security. This skill requires proficiency in several other areas of computer security, including programming and database management.
- Vulnerability assessment
Vulnerability assessment is the process by which an IT security analyst identifies weaknesses in a company’s network and computer systems. They use this information to develop strategies to protect these vulnerabilities, such as installing firewalls or changing passwords. Vulnerability assessment requires strong analytical skills, including attention to detail and the ability to interpret large volumes of data.
- Analytical skills
Analytical skills are the ability to examine data and find patterns, trends, or inconsistencies. This is an important skill for security analysts, as they often use their analytical skills when conducting vulnerability assessments, penetration testing, and other IT security tasks. Security analysts also use their analytical skills to assess potential risks and determine how best to protect companies’ information systems.
- Risk management
Risk management is the process of identifying potential risks and determining how to mitigate them. As an IT security analyst, you may be responsible for assessing a company’s cybersecurity needs and implementing solutions that reduce vulnerability. This requires the ability to identify potential threats and determine how to prevent them.
Organization is the ability to keep track of files, documents, and other information. As an IT security analyst, you may be responsible for keeping track of sensitive data or software used by your company. Strong organizational skills will help you quickly find what you need when you need it. It also helps to avoid losing important information by accident.
- Identity and access management
Identity and access management is the process of managing user credentials, passwords, and other identity information. This includes creating secure login procedures for company databases and applications. As an IT security analyst, you may be responsible for implementing new identity and access protocols or evaluating existing ones.
- Security audit
A security audit is a process of evaluating the security of a system against industry standards. Security analysts use this skill to assess an organization’s IT infrastructure and identify ways to improve security measures. It involves examining existing protocols, analyzing potential vulnerabilities, and proposing improvement solutions.
Flexibility is the ability to adapt to changing circumstances. As an IT security analyst, you may need to focus on one task rather than another or change your work schedule if necessary. Flexibility will help you stay productive and meet deadlines while maintaining a healthy work-life balance.
Communication is the ability to convey information in a way that others can understand. As an IT security analyst, you may need to communicate with clients and other employees about the technical details of computer systems or network security. Strong communication skills allow you to explain complex topics clearly so that others can understand them. This skill also allows you to work more effectively with your team members when developing new security measures for computers or networks.
- Security policies
Security policies are the rules that define how a company should treat data and information. Security analysts need to know about security policies to ensure that they are enforced, which is necessary to maintain customer and client trust. They also use security policies as a guide when creating new systems or procedures to protect against cyber threats.
Cryptography is the practice of encoding data in such a way that only authorized persons can access it. Security analysts use cryptography to protect sensitive information and ensure its integrity when transferring files or storing them on a computer. They also use cryptography to create passwords, which are codes used to verify a person’s identity for security purposes.
- Attention to detail
Attention to detail is a skill that can help the IT security analyst notice important information and details in the systems they analyze. This can include the ability to notice small changes in data, such as when someone tries to access confidential information or files on a company’s computer system. It also means paying close attention to the details of any potential threat so that the analyst can spot it and take appropriate action to protect their clients’ information.
- Application security
IT security analysts use their knowledge of application security to assess the risks associated with various computer systems. They analyze computer programs and networks to determine how they work, what data they store, and how an attacker can access them. IT security analysts then develop a plan to protect these systems, applying techniques such as updating software, changing passwords, or installing firewalls.
- Threat modeling
Threat modeling is the process of identifying potential threats to a system and describing how to deal with them. As an IT security analyst, it is important to have strong threat modeling skills so that you can develop effective strategies to protect your client’s data. Penetration testing
Penetration testing is the process of identifying vulnerabilities in a computer system or network. It is an important skill for IT security analysts, as it allows them to assess their company’s security measures and identify areas where they can be improved. Penetration testers often use software tools that simulate attacks on a system, allowing them to find weaknesses before the attackers do.
How to Become an IT Security Analyst
The IT security analyst profession can open up a new world of opportunity in the IT industry, but most potential IT security analysts need to follow certain steps:
- Find your industry
Decide which area you want to work in. This is important because data protection and security regulations vary from one area to the other. Look carefully at the security protocols of different industries and decide which industry best suits your skills and desires.
- Get a bachelor’s degree
Once you know the sector you want to work in, you can continue your education. There are thousands of universities, both online and offline, that offer a fast-track career path in the IT field. Most IT security analyst jobs require a four-year degree in information cybersecurity or a similar discipline.
- Advance your career with certificates
Once you’ve earned your degree, you can add relevant certifications to your portfolio.
These and other certifications can be obtained online through various programs that typically charge an exam fee for each certificate. Having one or more certifications can diversify your options and even help increase your annual salary. The computer industry is constantly changing. So look for new certification opportunities as technology advances.
Where to Work as an IT Security Analyst
Most IT security analysts work full-time in an office environment. They usually work normal office hours. They may work evenings or weekends in case of an emergency or data breach.
IT security analysts can work for almost any company, but they usually find work in the following industries:
- Health care
IT Security Analyst Salary Scale
The average annual salary of an IT Security Analyst in the United States and Canada are $83067 and $73,144 respectively. In the United Kingdom, the average annual salary of an IT Generalist is £40,777.