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How Do I Earn a Certificate in Information Systems Security?

When you're seeking career advancement in information security and information technology, a certificate or advanced degree is usually required. Earning a certificate in information systems security will teach you about risk management, operations security and cryptography. Many certificate programs in information systems security, often for mid-career professionals, are available.

Why Earn a Certificate in Information Systems Security?

Businesses and organizations rely on sensitive information, stored on computer databases, to run their operations. Keeping information in digital form offers many benefits. However, employees often abuse systems and hackers and cyber terrorists attack networks that are vulnerable to theft and scams, with very costly results. Companies hire information systems security specialists to keep their information systems and communication networks functioning reliably and securely. Potential employers for information systems security professionals include:

  • Hospitals
  • Businesses
  • Financial institutions
  • Educational institutions
  • Government agencies

Important Facts About Information Security Certificate Programs

Prerequisites Bachelor's degree is required for post-baccalaureate certificate programs
Degrees Certificate; post-baccalaureate certificate
Possible Careers Information security analyst; security consultant; security architect; security auditor
Continuing Education Continuing education is generally required to maintain professional certification
Median Salary (2018) $98,350 (for information security analysts)
Job Outlook (2016-2026) 28% growth (for information security analysts)

Information Systems Security Certificate Application

People who work in the field of information systems security may begin their careers as help desk professionals, systems analysts, database administrators, network administrators, analysts and web developers. Many have earned a bachelor's degree or master's degree before becoming interested in information systems security. Therefore, information technology work experience may be required for applicants to some certificate programs. Before enrolling, schools may require applicants to submit a resume and a personal essay describing their education and their experience as a systems administrator, network administrator or web developer.

Information Systems Security Certificate Curriculum

Certificate programs can help information technology workers become familiar with today's technologies, practices and methods. Some programs for information systems security certificates follow the standards set out by the Committee on National Security Systems (CNSS), which is part of the National Security Agency. A CNSS-certified program can lead to a stand-alone certificate, or it can be a concentration within a master's program in technology project management. Certificate programs may cover many of the following topics:

  • Information security and risk management
  • Enterprise security architecture
  • Crisis and risk management
  • Network security
  • Cryptography
  • Digital forensics
  • Security analysis