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Communications of the ACM

Privacy and security

We Need a Building Code For Building Code

We Need a Building Code for Building Code, photo illustration

Credit: Thomas Fredriksen

The market for cybersecurity professionals is booming. Reports attest to the difficulty of hiring qualified individuals; experts command salaries in excess of $200K.4 A May 2013 survey of 500 individuals reported the mean salary for a mid-level "cyber-pro" as approximately $111,500. Those with only an associate's degree, less than one year of experience, and no certifications could still earn $91,000 a year.7

Is cybersecurity a profession, or just an occupation? A profession should have "stable knowledge and skill requirements," according to a recent National Academies study,5 which concluded that cybersecurity does not have these yet and hence remains an occupation. Industry training and certification programs are doing well, regardless. There are enough different certification programs now that a recent article featured a "top five" list.


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