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How to land the best jobs in cyber security

Cyber security in Australia has become an integral part of every organisation’s infrastructure. In today’s digital age, the demand for cyber security professionals has skyrocketed due to the increasing prevalence of cybercrime.

Promoted by UNSW Online
Fri, 12 May 2023
How to land the best jobs in cyber security
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According to a report by AustCyber, the industry is expected to reach $30.45 billion by 2024, with 18,000 additional cyber security workers needed to meet the demand. Job postings have increased significantly in recent years, but the supply of qualified cyber security professionals is still not meeting the demand, with the AustCyber report also stating that there are currently 17,600 unfilled cyber security positions in Australia.

We’ll explore how to land the best cyber security jobs in Australia and the skills and education needed to succeed in these roles.

Cyber security jobs in Australia

The demand for cyber security professionals in Australia is high and continues to grow. This is due largely to the rise in cybercrime across all industries and businesses.

According to security researcher and cyber security advisor Andrew Constantine, who has over 10 years of experience in the field, cybercrime can be costly. “The Australian Cyber Security Centre released a report saying that cybercrime costs Australian businesses approximately $29 billion a year.”

Organisations of all sizes need to be aware, with cyber security for small businesses being equally as important as it is for larger businesses. The ACSC Annual Cyber Threat Report found that “from 2021 to 2022, the average loss per report across businesses increased 14 per cent compared to 2020–21”.

“No matter your business,” explains Constantine, “you need to go through heavy due diligence with your customers and your vendors. This is because they’ve got access to sensitive information that you may not be aware of.”

6 cyber security jobs worth considering

The cyber security industry offers a range of job roles, with every role having a unique set of responsibilities and designed to combat the risks to businesses.

The salary for cyber security experts will vary depending on the position you are working in, the experience you have and the level of postgraduate study you have completed. Let’s take a look at six roles in the industry, their primary responsibilities and salary expectations.

1. Privacy Expert

Privacy experts ensure that organisations comply with relevant data privacy laws, legislation and regulations. Their main responsibilities include developing and implementing privacy policies and procedures, conducting privacy impact assessments and providing privacy training to staff.

According to Glassdoor, the average salary for a privacy expert in Australia is $200,000 per year.

2. GRC (Governance Risk Compliance) Consultant

GRC consultants assist organisations in identifying, assessing and managing risks related to cyber security. They also help organisations comply with relevant laws and regulations.

According to Glassdoor, the average salary for a senior GRC consultant in Australia is $100,000 per year.

3. Security Analyst

Security analysts design, implement and manage security solutions for organisations. They are responsible for identifying and analysing security risks and developing solutions to mitigate them.

According to Talent, an entry-level security analyst position starts at $97,997, with the average salary being $115,000 per year.

4. Security Tester

Security testers assess the effectiveness of an organisation’s security measures by attempting to penetrate its systems and networks. They identify vulnerabilities and provide recommendations for improvement.

According to Hays, the salary for a security tester in Australia can range from $120,000 to $170,000 per year.

5. CSO (Chief Security Officer)

The CSO oversees an organisation’s cyber security strategy and operations. They develop policies and procedures, manage security incidents and provide cyber security training to staff.

According to Payscale, the average base salary for a CSO in Australia is around $150,000 per year.

6. Security Engineer

Security engineers design, implement and manage security solutions for organisations. They are responsible for identifying and analysing security risks and developing solutions to mitigate them.

According to Seek, the average salary for a security engineer in Australia is between $120,000 and $140,000 per year.

The most in-demand skills in the cyber security industry

The cyber security industry is constantly evolving, and to succeed you need a combination of both technical and soft skills.

Below, we provide a snapshot of these skills and why they matter.

Examples of soft skills for cyber security roles

Soft skills are vital in any given role. In cyber security, Constantine believes communication skills are what set you apart.

“You need to understand the business the customer is operating in, the threat landscape, regulatory needs, and to be able to articulate those messages better than the customer understands their own problems.”

The soft skills required across the industry include:

  • Teamwork and collaboration
  • Problem-solving
  • Critical thinking and logic
  • Interest in continuous learning and improvement
  • Communication
  • Curiosity

Examples of technical skills for cyber security roles

While soft skills ensure strong leadership across the board and the effective communication of information, technical skills are specific to the role.

The technical skills required across the industry include:

  • Knowledge of networking configuration and management
  • Operating systems expertise
  • Cyber security tools and techniques
  • Ability to install and manage firewalls
  • Analysis and management of risks
  • Data analytics skills
  • Cloud computing knowledge
  • Ethical hacking skills

What you need to succeed

If you’re interested in pursuing a career in cyber security, there are several educational paths to consider. Many employers value certifications, as they demonstrate expertise in specific areas of cyber security.

UNSW offers an online Master of Cyber Security designed to teach both the current and future state of cyber security and is perfect for those looking to change careers or upskill with technical knowledge. Within the online Master of Cyber Security, you can select from either the Management and Leadership specialisation or Security Engineering specialisation to further develop your expertise and leverage diverse career opportunities. The program is offered 100% online and accelerated, meaning you can study anywhere at any time, and graduate with a Masters in as little as 2 years without taking time out of the workforce.

Plus, have the option to choose the program that suits your career needs best:

What are the benefits of a career in cyber security?

A career in cyber security in Australia can be highly rewarding and offer a wide range of benefits. Some of the key benefits include:

  • High demand
  • Job security
  • Competitive salaries
  • Career progression
  • Flexibility
  • Constantly evolving industry

Land a job in cyber security with UNSW

Now is the perfect time to start a career in cyber security. With high demand, a shortage of qualified professionals and a growing need for cyber security across all industries, there are plenty of opportunities.

Speak with UNSW Online’s team of enrolment advisors on 1300 974 990 or download a program guide at to learn more about how the online Master of Cyber Security at UNSW can set you up for a rewarding and fulfilling career.

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