IT security professions in figures: 12 statistics

Security roles — whether in data, information, network, systems or cloud — are listed as “hard to fill” positions in Robert Half Technology’s 2019 salary guide.

You’ve heard that one before. But scroll down to the report’s national average salary charts for security-related jobs and “hard to staff” starts to sound like a laughable understatement, the lowest percentiles for the least skilled or least experienced roles as commander always close to six -the quantified wages. This is the ground, folks.

The national average salary for a chief security officer is $270,000. (Source: Robert Half Technology)

Step into more experienced, higher-ranking security roles and the salaries increase dramatically. At the highest level, the national average salary for a chief security officer is $270,000 (95th percentile). This is just below the national average CIO salary of $293,000 (also 95th percentile. Robert Half defines the 95th percentile as: “A significantly high level of relevant expertise, including specialist certifications, may require salary in highest percentile. The role may be very complex or in a market with extremely high competition for talent.)

Sure, it’s the C-suite, but you don’t have to sit close to earn a big payday as a security professional these days. At the top of Robert Half’s average pay scales, a senior information systems security officer brings in nearly $200,000 a year.

[ Read our related story: Hiring security gurus: 3 strategies to find scarce talent. ]

All those high projections about a lack of cybersecurity talent? Employers already seem to integrate them into the labor market. It’s not just about salary data, either: there’s a range of numbers that quantify the current (and future) state of IT security talent. Below, we’ll share 12 (and more) that paint an accurate picture of what IT managers face when looking for security professionals — and what job seekers can expect. .

3.5 million: The number of unfilled cybersecurity jobs worldwide expected in 2021, according to an oft-cited projection from Cybersecurity Ventures. Research firm Frost & Sullivan previously predicted 1.5 million unfilled security jobs by 2020.

$93,000: The lowest national average salary for a security-related position in the United States in Robert Half Technology’s 2019 Salary Guide.

43,467: The number of vacancies returned for a recent nationwide search for “information security” on the Glassdoor job site. Consider the wide variety of potential titles in the security field and you’ll get a broader idea of ​​the job market. For example, “IT security analyst” returns 15,348 jobs on Glassdoor. Naturally, broader searches, such as “computer security” (20,457 results) produce larger numbers, while results decline for searches for more specific titles, such as computer security specialist (2,244). There is a significant range of security-related job titles and specialty areas, including in emerging technologies such as containers.

129,173: The number of results for a nationwide job search for “information security” on LinkedIn. LinkedIn itself advertises a position for a senior information security engineer, working in vulnerability research and assessment — another reminder of the diverse menu of potential titles in the security job market.

78 percent : The percentage of companies (with in-house security resources) that also hire an external security firm for assistance, according to CompTIA’s recently released report, “2018 Trends in Cybersecurity: Building Effective Security Teams.” Half of the companies that use external resources actually work with two or three different security-related companies.

72 percent : In that same CompTIA report, nearly three out of four companies said they view their security operations center (SOC) as an internal function.

25% of companies say a “significant improvement” is needed in network security skills.

25 percentage : The CompTIA report notes that some fundamental security skills, such as network security and access control, are relatively strong in today’s enterprises. Yet even when good news arrives, there is a caveat: one in four companies still say “significant improvement” is needed in network security skills, for example.

$93,000: The lowest national average salary for a security-related position in the United States in Robert Half Technology’s 2019 Salary Guide. We repeat: it is the lowest. This is the average 25th percentile salary for a network security administrator. Robert Half says the 25th percentile (the lowest of its salary grids) “most often suits candidates who are newer to the job and still developing their skills.”

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