Are you planning to take up a career in ethical hacking or have recently qualified as an Ethical Hacker?
If your answer is yes to any of the questions above, then you must be curious to know what lies ahead of you. You have spent enough time and money on learning ethical hacking and it’s time to start working as a professional ethical hacker. Most organizations have made it mandatory for ethical hackers to have CEHV9 and CEHV10 certifications.
A CEH certificate verifies that you are a Certified Ethical Hacker, and today you can find various online certification providers providing CEH certification training course to help people aspiring to get into cybersecurity.
Ethical hacking is a relatively new profession and is currently blooming as more and more organizations face security threats and breaches on a regular basis. Organizations are ready to invest in good ethical hackers who can help to mend their security loopholes.
Your pay as an ethical hacker will depend on a number of factors like:
- The organization you will be working for
- The number of responsibilities you will be handling
- The size of your team
- Your level of expertise
- Your certifications and specializations
- Your previous working experiences (if applicable)
Along with these, the salary of an ethical hacker also varies according to the location and job role. An ethical hacker should have certain skills in order to qualify for a job. Without these basic skills, it is hard for an ethical hacker to expect standard pay.
The required skills for an ethical hacking job are:
- Good analytical skills to understand complex data
- Good communication skills to convey information to the concerned authorities in layman terms
- Strong logical sense and the attitude to solve any problem with dedication
- Advanced knowledge of networks and programming, security protocols, etc.
- Ability to understand and work on different tools and software
- Knowledge of cybercrime rules and laws
- Willingness to work under tight deadlines and stressful situations
Once recruited, the ethical hacker has to carry out specific job roles within the organization on a daily basis. You need to justify your role within the organization you will be working for and also carry out your job with accuracy to increase your chances of getting a good raise and promotion.
As an ethical hacker you need to:
- Constantly monitoring for external security threats
- Penetrating into networks and discovering possible security threats
- Developing cybersecurity tools
- Delivering a detailed assessment report to the management from time to time
- Training team members and juniors
In addition to carrying out these roles, an ethical hacker often needs to extend their working hours and need to work on weekends if the requirement arises. So, you can see that the role of an ethical hacker is not an easy one.
If you believe, you can fit the bill, the next thing you should inquire about is how much salary can an ethical hacker earn? As mentioned above, the pay depends on a number of factors but to provide an estimate of the pay, here are some rough figures for you:
- Entry-level (0 to 5 years) – $50,000 – $100,000
- Junior (5 to 10 years) – $100,000 – $120,000
- Senior (10 years+) – $120,000+
The salary structure may vary up depending on your CEH certifications. Ethical hacking job roles can vary according to specialization. The average salary ranges as per different specializations are provided below:
- Cyber Security Analyst – $47,000 – $118,000
- Information Security Analyst – $48,500 – $107,000
- Information Security Manager – $72,000 – $152,500
- Forensics Computer Analyst – $42,500 – $118,00
- Network Security Analyst – $41,000 – $107,000
- Penetration Tester – $50,500 – $127,000
- Security Engineer – $56,000 – $133,000
Some recent surveys conducted in the field of ethical hacking indicated the difference in pay as per different cities. To get an estimate, here’s what an average salary of an ethical hacker looks like in different parts of the USA.
- San Francisco- $150, 000
- Minneapolis- $97,000
- California – $103,500
- Washington, D.C. – $97,000
- Maryland – $93,550
- New York – $92,600
- Virginia – $92,000
As you can see that San Francisco is the highest paying city in US while Virginia is the lowest. The amount varies from city to city and country to country. So, whatever you get paid for is not always based on your skills and expertise but also depends on certain external factors.
Having said that, you can very well understand that a career in ethical hacking is quite rewarding and the demand for ethical hackers are increasing at a steady pace. If your interest lies in ethical hacking, this could be the best time to enter this field and start doing what you do best-making cyberspace more secure and safe.