Important Job Skills for Information Security Analysts

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An information security analyst is responsible for protecting the computer network of an organization or government agency from cyber threats. He or she creates, maintains, and controls security measures to make sure computer networks are regulated and monitored.

Education and Job Requirements

As security threats to businesses and government agencies increase, the information security analyst role is becoming increasingly important. Generally, this is not an entry-level position. A bachelor’s degree in computer science, programming, or engineering is a minimal requirement, and many companies further require a master's degree and many years' network experience.

Information security analysts work with various members of an organization. They must be able to communicate security measures and threats to people from a wide variety of technical and non-technical backgrounds.

Job Outlook and Salary

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, 112,300 people were employed as information security analysts in 2018.

Their median annual wage in 2018 was $98,350. The lowest 10% earned less than $56,750, and the highest 10% earned more than $156,580.

Career opportunities in this field are anticipated to grow by 32% by 2028—much faster than in other occupations.

Top Information Security Analyst Skills

Below is a list of information security analyst skills for resumes, cover letters, job applications, and interviews. Included is a detailed list of five of the most valuable information security analyst skills, as well as a longer list of even more related skills.

Information Technology Knowledge

Threats to cybersecurity are always changing, as are the solutions. Information security analysts must continually update their knowledge of the latest data-protection news, cybersecurity legislation, practices, and techniques. A good information security analyst seeks out this information and uses it to shape his or her problem-solving strategies.

Analytical

Information security analysts must have strong analytical skills. They have to be able to study computer systems, assess any potential risks, and consider possible solutions.

Communication

Information security analysts must educate users, explaining to them the importance of cybersecurity, and how they should protect their data. They have to communicate this information in a clear and engaging way. Therefore, information security analysts need strong oral and written communication skills.

Creativity

Creativity is critical for information security analysts. They must be able to anticipate cyberattacks, always thinking one step ahead of a cyber threat. This kind of forward-thinking requires a creative approach.

Detail-Oriented

Many threats to cybersecurity are hard to detect. Information security analysts have to be focused on the details of a security system, noting any minor changes, and foreseeing any potential problems, however small.

Information Security Analyst Skills List

  • Analytical ability
  • Administering Information Security Software and Controls
  • Analyzing Security System Logs, Security Tools, and Data
  • Communicating Up, Down, and Across All Levels of the Organization
  • Communication
  • Creating, Modifying, and Updating Intrusion Detection Systems (IDS) 
  • Creating, Modifying, and Updating Security Information Event Management (SIEM) 
  • Creativity
  • Experience With Intrusion Prevention Systems and Tools
  • Deep Understanding of Risk Management Frameworks
  • Defining Process for Managing Network Security
  • Detail Oriented
  • Discovering Vulnerabilities in Information Systems 
  • Evaluating and Deconstructing Malware Software
  • Familiarity with Security Regulations and Standards
  • Implement and Maintain Security Frameworks for Existing and New Systems
  • Information Technology Knowledge
  • Improving Security Efficiency
  • Installing Firewall and Data Encryption Programs
  • Maintaining Security Records of Monitoring and Incident Response Activities
  • Monitoring Compliance with Information Security Policies and Procedures
  • Network and System Administration Experience
  • Remediating Security Issues
  • Responding to Requests for Specialized Cyber Threat Reports
  • Performing Cyber and Technical Threat Analyses
  • Performing Security Monitoring
  • Preventing Hacker Intrusion
  • Producing Situational and Incident-Related Reports
  • Problem-Solving
  • Providing Host-Based Forensics
  • Providing Timely and Relevant Security Reports
  • Responding to Security Events
  • Self-Motivation
  • Staying One Step Ahead of Cyber Attacks
  • Strong Technical Background in Data Loss Prevention
  • Supporting and Managing Security Services
  • Team Player
  • Training Organization on Security Measures
  • Up-To-Date on Relevant Technologies

How to Showcase Your Skills

Incude skills on your resume. You can use these skill words in your resume. In the description of your work history, you might want to use some of these keywords.

Use skill words in your cover letter. In the body of your letter, you can mention one or two of these skills, and give a specific example of a time when you demonstrated those skills at work.

Mention these skill words in an interview. Make sure you have at least one example of a time when you demonstrated each of the top skills listed here.

Article Sources

  1. Occupational Outlook Handbook. "How to Become an Information Security Analyst." Accessed Jan. 8, 2020.

  2. Occupational Outlook Handbook. "What Information Security Analysts Do." Accessed Jan. 8, 2020.

  3. Occupational Outlook Handbook. "Information Security Analysts." Accessed Jan. 8, 2020.