The number of job postings for cybersecurity positions in Iowa increased by 158% between 2010 and 2014 according to tech industry job market research firm Burning Glass Technologies. Nearly 2,000 cybersecurity jobs were offered during this time frame. In addition to being difficult to fill, cybersecurity positions pay 9% more than the average for the IT industry overall according to Burning Glass Technologies.
While a large variety of industries face critical risks from cyber attackers, financial industries are particularly tempting targets. Des Moines, in particular, is home to a number of potential high value targets for cybercriminals, since it is the third largest insurance hub in the country.
Johnston-based financial services company SHAZAM described how hackers attempt to break into the company’s network about 500,000 times a day to access its financial transactions, as detailed in a 2016 Iowa Association of Business and Industry article. The company partners with law enforcement agencies and other companies around the country to prevent them from succeeding.
Mark Schouten, the Director of the Iowa Department of Homeland Security and Emergency Management, described to the Gazette how an attack against the state’s water, gas, or electrical systems “could cause significant damage to property, loss of life or civil unrest.”
Mounting concerns about such possibilities led Governor Terry Branstad to sign an executive order in late 2015 to address cybersecurity threats in Iowa. This order followed up on the formation of a state cyber-working group that involved a number of Iowa agencies, private industry representatives, and federal agencies such as the FBI and US Department of Homeland Security.
In addition, Branstad is tasking Iowa’s Homeland Security agency with updating its emergency response plan, so that the state is prepared in case of a cyber attack on critical infrastructure.
Salaries for Key Cybersecurity Professions in the Major Cities of Iowa
According to the Robert Half Technology 2016 Salary Guide, cybersecurity analysts and administrators in Iowa can expect to earn salaries within the ranges shown here. Cybersecurity professionals with master’s degree have the advanced expertise to earn on the high end of these ranges:
- Data Security Analysts: $103,489 – $145,888
- Information Security Administrators: $99,170 – $140,530
- Network Security Administrators: $97,055 – $138,180
- Data Security Analysts: $104,590 – $120,901
- Information Security Administrators: $100,225 – $116,461
- Network Security Administrators: $$98,088 – $114,513
- Data Security Analysts: $110,095 – $155,200
- Information Security Administrators: $105,550 – $149,500
- Network Security Administrators $103,250 – $147,000
- Data Security Analysts: $91,379 – $128,816
- Information Security Administrators: $87,565 – $124,085
- Network Security Administrators: $85.698 – $122,010
- Data Security Analysts: $95,783 – $135,024
- Information Security Administrators: $91,785 – $130,065
- Network Security Administrators: $89,828 – $127,890
Salaries for Information Security Analysts in Iowa’s Major Cities
The US Bureau of Labor Statistics provides a high level of detail on the salaries for information security analysts in the major cities of Iowa as of 2015. Information security analysts with a master’s degree can expect to earn salaries in the highest percentiles: