How Much Do Cyber Security Jobs Pay (2024)?

How Much Do Cyber Security Jobs Pay

If you’re looking for a lucrative tech career, you need to look no further than the cyber security sector.

Cyber security jobs are some of the highest paying and professionally rewarding across the industry. But how much do cyber security jobs pay?

This depends on a number of factors, such as the role, your experience, and your location. Not all cyber security jobs are created equal, and the salary of an intermediate Cyber Security Analyst and that of an advanced Chief Information Security Officer (CISO) aren’t likely to overlap.

There’s a lot to factor in, but we’ve combed through all the pay data, so you don’t have to.

Read on to learn more about how your location, job role, and experience can affect your salary.

Cyber Security Average Salary Overview

Overall, cyber security pays very well. In fact, it’s one of the best-paying sectors across the entire technology field.

According to Glassdoor, cyber security jobs in the United States pay an average of $123k annually. This is more than cloud, IT, web dev, general networking, and computer science jobs and ties with computer programmer salaries for the top spot.

Salary Ranges for Different Technology Sectors - USA

This high average salary isn’t particularly skewed by one or two specific high-paid roles within the security industry, either. The salary floor is competitive, and even entry-level salaries do well compared to other fields.

For instance, according to Glassdoor (here and here), a Cyber Security Analyst will most likely start with a salary no lower than $83k, while a web developer could start as low as $70k in most likely scenarios.

So, starting and average salaries are high for cyber security jobs compared to other tech jobs, and generally, the tech industry pays well compared to other sectors.

There’s also ample room for progression and growth, with advanced roles such as Chief Information Security Officer (CISO) frequently offering salaries north of $300k in the US.

Indeed listing for Chief Information Security Officer with salary of $300k - $350k
Source: Indeed

Your cyber security salary will depend on several factors.

First, and most obviously, it will depend on your experience; more experience tends to equal better pay.

It can also depend on your certifications, as some employers will look for certs to checkmark your expertise.

How much these jobs pay can also depend on your location. For instance, cyber security jobs in the United States tend to pay better than those in the United Kingdom, even accounting for the cost of living and exchange rates.

What’s more is that even within one country, salaries for the same job roles can vary depending on where the job is based. City jobs, for instance, tend to pay more than jobs elsewhere.

Are you struggling to pick a cyber security certification? Reading our guide can help you decide:

Top Entry Level Cyber Security Certifications for You

How Much Do Entry-Level Cyber Security Jobs Pay?

Entry-level cyber security positions in the United States offer promising starting salaries for individuals with little experience, reflecting the industry's demand for talent.

Salaries vary by role, with SOC Analysts earning between $58,000 and $72,000 annually.

Cyber Security Sales positions start at $60,000 to $80,000, illustrating the lucrative nature of security solutions sales.

Vulnerability Testers, crucial for identifying system weaknesses, can expect salaries ranging from $73,000 to $97,000.

Lastly, Cyber Security Analysts, who play a key role in protecting information systems, are often offered $80,000 to $90,000 as starting salaries.

These figures underscore the value and investment in securing digital infrastructure from the outset of a cyber security career.

In the coming sections, we will look at national industry averages in the USA and UK, before deep diving into the most popular roles and their international averages by experience level.

How Much Do Cyber Security Jobs Pay in the USA?

Cyber security roles in the United States are among the highest paying in the technology sector, reflecting the country's demand for professionals to safeguard digital assets.

On average, salaries can range significantly based on experience, location, and role. Entry-level positions, such as Cyber Security Analysts, start at competitive salaries, often exceeding $80,000 annually for those with one to three years experience.

Advanced roles, like Chief Information Security Officers (CISOs), can command salaries upwards of $300,000, showcasing the lucrative potential for career advancement.

The variation in pay is also influenced by geographical location, with tech hubs like San Francisco and New York offering higher compensation to reflect the cost of living and competitive markets.

How Much Do Cyber Security Jobs Pay in the UK?

In the UK, cyber security professionals enjoy rewarding salaries, though typically lower than their US counterparts when considering currency conversion and cost of living.

Starting salaries for roles such as Cyber Security Analysts can be around £35,000 to £40,000 (with potential for growth as experience and expertise develop).

Senior roles, like CISOs, in the UK might see salaries reach up to £100,000 or more, particularly in financial services and tech sectors located in major cities like London.

The UK's focus on developing cyber security talent through education and professional development initiatives continues to support salary growth in this critical industry.

Let’s examine specific roles, their duties, and go on to break down salaries by nation and experience level.

Understanding Cyber Security Roles

While we can refer to the cyber security sector as a well-paying industry, it’s not homogenous.

There are numerous roles in the field and varying pay scales for each. Here are just a few of the most popular cyber security careers and what they involve.

Cyber Security Career Pathway

Cyber Security Analyst

A Cyber Security Analyst helps ensure an organization's security against cyber threats. It’s an umbrella term for a generalist role.

A Cyber Security Analyst could find themselves undertaking all kinds of blue team activities, from monitoring networks and detecting threats to changing a network’s infrastructure and improving internal security.

While more advanced than feeder roles—which can feed into a cyber security career—that of Cyber Security Analyst is still a relatively entry-level role within the cyber field.

Learn how to become a Cyber Security Analyst in our guide:

How to Become a Cyber Security Analyst: A Career Guide

Cyber Security Consultant

A Cyber Security Consultant is a cyber security expert who shares their expertise with other companies and advises them for a fee. 

It’s an advanced generalist role, and as with consultants in every industry, the consultant’s expertise is shared either as a freelancer or via a consultancy agency or firm.

The Cyber Security Consultant will come into an organization, advise on and establish procedures in information security specific to this organization, and train its staff to help implement the consultant’s recommendations.

Incident and Intrusion Analyst

An Incident and Intrusion Analyst deals with cyber security attacks that are ongoing or have already occurred.

In addition to investigating the attack to find its source, the Incident and Intrusion Analyst will also work to take security measures to minimize any damage or further threats caused by the attack.

To be an Incident and Intrusion Analyst you need to be a defense specialist and an advanced cyber security professional dealing with security breaches.

Penetration Tester

A Penetration Tester attacks and intrudes into an organization’s network to test its security and defenses and then recommends a course of action to prevent similar attacks or intrusions from real malicious actors.

Companies will hire Penetration Testers to find vulnerabilities in their security systems to patch these issues and prevent real-world attacks.

A Penetration Tester is a specialist with an offensive role requiring specialized expertise in network and system vulnerabilities and exploits.

Learn how to become a Penetration Tester in our guide:

How to Become a Penetration Tester: The Ultimate Guide

Chief Information Security Officer

A Chief Information Security Officer (CISO) governs and manages an organization’s entire cyber security system and strategy.

A CISO is expected to implement and maintain every aspect of the organization’s computer systems and data security.

They manage other information security managers and professionals who’lll be implementing secure network solutions according to the CISO’s directives.

Chief Information Security Officer is one of the highest roles in terms of expertise. While it’s more of a governing role than a technical one, CISOs are also expected to have advanced technical expertise.

How Much Do Cyber Security Jobs Pay?

How much a cyber security job pays depends on the role.

Here are some of the most popular cyber security jobs and their respective average salaries in the USA, based on data taken from Glassdoor.

  • Cyber Security Analyst: $105k
  • Cyber Security Consultant: $143k
  • Incident and Intrusion Analyst: $102k
  • Penetration Tester: $135k
  • Chief Information Security Officer: $313k
Average USA Cyber Security Salaries

All of these cyber security positions offer ample opportunity for salary progression within the same job role.

Based on our Glassdoor research, here are the average salaries for these roles separated into experience levels. Beginner is 0-3 years experience, intermediate is 4-9 years, and advanced is 10 years or more.

Average Cyber Security Salaries by Experience

The one kind of cyber security job where there seems to be less opportunity for in-role salary progression is CISO.

This is because CISO jobs are a kind of cyber security endgame—at least on the governance side—and even “starter” salaries are incredibly high.

Below, we curated a list of the average annual salary for all of these roles for the following countries:

  • United States
  • United Kingdom
  • India
  • Canada
  • Germany
  • Japan

We collected and averaged this data from several trusted sources, such as Glassdoor, Payscale, World Salaries, and Salary Expert. We’ve intentionally omitted any results that seemed erroneous because of low sample data or other factors—for instance, when advanced salaries were lower than intermediate ones.

Cyber Security Analyst Salary

As an intermediate role, Cyber Security Analyst salaries don’t pay quite as much as some of the others we looked at. However, salaries are still high in all locations and offer excellent career progression opportunities.

USA SalaryUK SalaryIndia SalaryCanada SalaryGermany SalaryJapan Salary
Overall$105k£40k₹1.1m CA$81k€59k¥6.6m
Beginner $79.5k£37k₹494kCA$75k€49k¥3.8m
Advanced $113k£57.5k₹1.8mCA$100k€65k¥9.8m

Cyber Security Consultant Salary

Cyber Security Consultants are expected to have an advanced level of experience so that they can charge accordingly. We see this reflected in the data, with salaries for the role being higher than the others apart from CISO.

USA SalaryUK SalaryIndia SalaryCanada SalaryGermany SalaryJapan Salary
Beginner $94k£46k₹499kCA$77k€28k¥4.3m

Incident and Intrusion Analyst Salary

While Incident and Intrusion Analyst jobs require a specialized skill set, the data shows that unfortunately, the role pays a little less than other advanced cyber security roles. Overall, the pay is good, and it’s an enjoyable role for those who like getting stuck into the weeds of system defence.

USA SalaryUK SalaryIndia SalaryCanada SalaryGermany SalaryJapan Salary

Penetration Tester Salary

We found that Penetration Tester jobs pay better than many other advanced cyber security roles. Penetration testing is in demand, and this is reflected in the pay across all geographical regions. It also offers one of the best salary progressions of any cyber security job.

USA SalaryUK SalaryIndia SalaryCanada SalaryGermany SalaryJapan Salary

Chief Information Security Officer Salary

On average, CISO salaries are higher than any other cyber security job’s salary. Whether you’ve been a CISO for one or five years doesn’t seem to matter much. If you got to this level you’ve probably already climbed the salary ranks in other roles. The only outlying CISO salary location appears to be Canada, where CISO salaries seem to align with other more technical roles.

USA SalaryUK SalaryIndia SalaryCanada SalaryGermany SalaryJapan Salary

Future Trends for Cyber Security Salaries

While 2023 and the start of 2024 have certainly been a tumultuous time for the tech industry as well as the global economy at large, cyber security has been very resilient relative to other industries.

This is largely because most organizations simply cannot afford the potential negative consequences of passing over or cheaping out on cyber security.

Learn more about the changing cyber security job landscape:

50+ Cyber Security Job Statistics & Trends

In fact, by and large, salaries across the cyber security industry are increasing and are predicted to continue their upward climb over the coming years.

Comparing median salaries from 2021 to 2023, for instance, we see many information security and cyber security salaries in the United States increasing dramatically. For example, the salary of an Information Security Officer increased from $169k to $202k on average.

Company budgets are a testament to this, with an extra 6% allocated towards cyber security on average in 2023 compared to previous years.

Cyber Security Skills Gap

There is also a skills gap in the sector—employers require more cyber security professionals than are available. The resulting labor gap is in your favor.

With more jobs than candidates, employers compete for professionals, leading to higher wages and more substantial benefits.

While the cyber security workforce has increased over recent years—the US cyber workforce has risen by 59% since 2010—the labor gap still exists.

In 2023, for example, about 4 million extra cyber security workers were needed worldwide. This workforce gap is particularly large in North America, Europe, and Asia-Pacific.

Cyber Security Workforce Gap

Conclusion: How Much Do Cyber Security Jobs Pay?

Cyber security jobs offer competitive salaries compared to other high-paying careers in technology. On average, they tie computer programmer jobs for pay and beat web developer and cloud salaries.

Some of the most popular cyber security jobs, such as Cyber Security Analyst, Incident and Intrusion Analyst, Cyber Security Consultant, Penetration Tester, and Chief Information Security Officer, pay very well in all kinds of countries across the globe.

And there’s plenty of room for salary progression within roles, too.

If you want to enter this lucrative field and take your first steps toward becoming a cyber security professional, consider a StationX Membership.

If you become a member, you’ll gain access to thousands of cyber security courses and tests, a mentorship program to keep you on track with your learning, career guidance, and a helpful community of like-minded peers.

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