Information security is vital to every business and agency in the world. Just one stolen file or crashed server can result in millions of dollars of damages. While hackers are a menace that IT departments have to deal with on a daily basis, skilled workers are able to keep servers and networks safe from any threat. A career in computer security is very lucrative because most workers make $70,000 or more a year, but this is a saturated field that is difficult to enter. Having a degree will significantly increase the likelihood of you being hired, but only if it’s from the right school. Here are the 10 online schools that offer the best computer security degree programs.
Carnegie Mellon University
The Carnegie Mellon University offers an intensive online program for anyone seeking a six-year degree in information technology. There are two different paths that you can follow for this degree, but the information security and assurance one is the best if you want a career in computer security.
This program focuses primarily on helping students adapt to intruders. Not only will you deeply understand how hackers think, but you will also learn how to stop them within minutes. The program also covers minimizing risk, data privacy and overall information security.
Carnegie Mellon University often receives high marks from third-party reviews. If you want to participate in an online program with balanced courses, then this is the university for you.
Creighton University offers an online program for IT management. This may not seem like the best degree for someone seeking a career in computer security, but it might be ideal if you want a higher position. This degree focuses on showing students how to manage an IT department and whole networks. One of the main focal points of the program is how the IT department affects the entire business.
The courses focus on many different topics, but most classes are devoted to information security. The program will also teach you how to assemble an efficient team. Most businesses need a team player, not a sole worker that tries to fix all of the problems by him or herself.
If you want a managerial position in computer security, then this degree will help you achieve it. If you would prefer to have a lower position with less responsibility, or if you want a degree that focuses more on overall security, then you may want to consider another university.
Boston University Distance Education
Though it might be an independent and nonprofit university, Boston University Distance Education has a respected IT degree program that has led many graduates to easily find employment. If all of your core classes are done, then you can get the degree within two years.
This college prefers to show students how to be secure from the very beginning. You will learn how to properly build databases, harden networks so that they are impervious to attackers and create data structures that hackers cannot easily attack. You will also learn about general topics like keeping the network healthy, managing databases and how to help the business through proper data mining.
If you want a degree that you can get in just a few years that focuses on proper data building, then this is the perfect university for you.
Arizona State University
This university offers the most realistic degree program that allows you to target real issues that affect businesses and industries on a daily basis. This is because students are expected to work in teams for large projects to help businesses solve their security problems.
Another good thing about this university is that you can learn from industry leaders because there are many discussions and seminars that you can watch and participate in over the Internet.
The degree itself focuses on information security, forming new controls and protocols to minimize internal and external threats and understanding the value of information. Businesses often like this college because you don’t just learn about computer security. You also learn about how the IT department directly affects the business as a whole.
New Jersey Institute of Technology
If you want to work with government agencies or private businesses, then this is a university that you should consider. You will be taught how to create and maintain the databases and networks commonly used by these establishments. Accounting and business operations are included in the program.
Not only will you learn about information security, but you will also be taught analytic skills so that you can properly understand a hacker’s behavior. This is a major skill that you will be using whenever an unauthorized person tries to access the network.
This program is best for people who want to work for unconventional agencies. If you want to work for public companies, then this may not be the program for you.
This is another university that will help you qualify for higher positions. Graduates are immediately able to fill senior positions for most companies because the program is very intensive.
Drexel University focuses on two different areas with its program: skills and advanced technology. The skills area will teach you the skills needed for a career in computer security. You will learn how to analyze and design systems, implement new programs, test applications and assess dangers, risks and other problems. Anyone who finishes this program will be more than ready to stop hackers and other security issues.
The second area will provide you with the newest programs and techniques used by the security industry to prevent data theft, hacking and internal risk. This area ensures that you know the current climate of computer security so that you can tackle the most pressing security issues.
Western Governors University
WGU’s online degree uses a competency-based program that ensures that all students are prepared for careers in the security industry. Aside from introducing students to real-world scenarios so that you can see the types of problems that you will face when working with a company, the program will help you prepare for the worst if something happens to the servers.
You will learn how to build networks that are difficult for hackers to attack, stop viruses and hackers from digging into the servers and disaster recovery if the hardware fails. The program also covers cyberlaw and the compliance measures that you must take to ensure that the business is as safe as possible.
This is a practical degree program that will get you ready for the demanding reality of computer security.
Robert Morris University
If you are interested in working with a large corporation, then you might want to consider Robert Morris University. That’s because this university focuses on helping students manage huge amounts of data. This university expects that you will work with companies that have huge data rooms and a massive online presence, and you are prepared accordingly.
Aside from teaching you how to help the company grow even larger, you will learn how to secure the entire network so that no one can steal information from it. Every student that receives a degree from this university will understand how to indentify intruders and network problems, deal with hardware and software issues and manage the company’s online presence.
Nova Southeastern University
Computer security isn’t a rigid career path. It’s one that experiences many twists and turns as hackers change and hardware advances. That’s why Nova Southeastern University values adaptability more than anything else. Every student is taught how to adapt to everyday changes that affect the IT world. While you will also learn about common topics like overall network security and application deployment, courses are usually focused on showing students how to quickly identify new problems so that they can be quickly dealt with.
Not only will this prepare you for a career in computer security, but employers often value people with a degree from this university because adaptability is key to keeping up with today’s constantly changing digital landscape.
The online degree program offered by Walden University is very similar to the Boston University degree program since you will be taught how to harden a network and information system from the very beginning. The entire program focuses on building, managing and securing small and large systems so that you can help a business during all stages of digital growth.
Unlike many of the other programs on this list, you don’t need to have experience with technology to get this degree. There are two tracks. One is for people who understand technology and want a higher degree, while the other is for those who are new to information security.
If you want a career in computer security, then you need a degree. Few companies are willing to trust their entire network to someone who doesn’t have the experience and education needed to maintain all of the servers and software. This demanding job that you can only get if you have the best online degree.