Homeland Security Officer: Job Description & Salary

Take a look at what a homeland security officer does and how you can become one. Read on to find out more about this job role, what you will be expected to do and how much you could earn. Schools offering Criminal Justice degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

Career Information at a Glance

Working in homeland security offers a wide range of job opportunities for those with different skills. Being a homeland officer means that protecting the nation is at the core of what you do. Find out more about being a homeland security officer in the table below.

Education Required High-school diploma or bachelor's degree, depending on the job applied for
Education Field of Study For jobs requiring a bachelor's: criminal law or related field
Skills Required Communication, collaboration, analytical thinking, flexibility
Job Growth (2016-2026) 5% (for all protective service occupations)*
Median Salary (2019) $76,000 (for all U.S. Department of Homeland Security staff)**

Sources: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), **Payscale.com

What Is Homeland Security?

The U.S. Department of Homeland Security is a large team of people who work together to keep the nation safe from threats including terrorism and natural disasters. There are a range of job opportunities available in this field, including becoming a program analyst for homeland security, an air marshal or a coast guard. Homeland security officers aim to reduce the risk of security threats and respond to any attacks on security which happen. They also coordinate and respond to natural disasters, keeping the general public's safety at the forefront of their role.

What Are Homeland Security's Key Responsibilities?

Homeland security officers work together in a range of roles to achieve five responsibilities. The Department of Homeland Security outlines the key focus areas for the department as a whole. Protecting the nation's borders and ensuring that the general public is safe from terrorist threats are two important aims of homeland security. The department also aims to facilitate legal immigration while being vigilant towards illegal immigration. Developing a sense of readiness, particularly regarding natural disasters, is something which homeland security also works towards.

What Skills Do I Need?

Working as a homeland security officer requires excellent communication and collaboration skills. You will be working alongside a range of other professionals within the homeland department as well as police forces and disaster relief agencies, so working as part of a team is essential. It is also important to be able to think quickly and analytically. You will be required to think of a range of potential motives for security crimes committed, along with coming up with new and effective solutions.

How Much Will I Earn?

According to Payscale.com, the median salary for homeland security workers in 2019 was $76,000. This takes into account several different roles, such as intelligence analysts and transportation security officers. Immigration officers reported median earnings of $61,174.

How Should I Apply?

To apply for roles in homeland security, you should take a look at the vacancies posted on the federal government's website USAJOBS. If you do not currently work in federal employment, you will be required to create an account from which you can search for all jobs that are open to the general public and proceed with any suitable applications. The Department of Homeland Security regularly updates USAJOBS with all available job openings and the site also offers help on how to create a federal resume.

To continue researching, browse degree options below for course curriculum, prerequisites and financial aid information. Or, learn more about the subject by reading the related articles below:

  • 1. Degree Options:
The schools in the listing below are not free and may include sponsored content but are popular choices among our users. Tuition and costs will vary across programs and locations. Be sure to always request tuition information before starting a program.

Popular Schools

  1. 1
  2. 2
  3. Next »