Computer and Information Systems Security/Information Assurance

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With each passing day, our world is becoming more and more digital. Many businesses, government entities, and other organizations utilize the internet and web services for data management and communication. As more and more information is stored in and transferred through cyberspace, keeping it safe and secure is new and ever-growing need. This created a need for a specialized individual with the skills to do so. Computer and information systems security is a relatively new and emerging major within the field of computer and information sciences. Those who study this major learn how to design, configure, implement, manage, support, and secure computer systems and networks to protect information they hold against unauthorized access or modification. 

Students majoring in computer and information systems security can expect to spend lots and lots of time face-to-screen -- a computer screen that is. Students will take a variety of classes in computer programming, networking, administration, support, analysis, and security. Many programs include a semester-long internship, which is excellent for gaining real-world experience and for providing students a leg up on the competition once they begin job searching.

Those pursuing a career as an information security analyst usually need at least a bachelor's degree. Since this is a relatively new major, it is not widely available among colleges and universities. Some schools offer it as a specialization or certificate program within the general information systems or computer science programs. Some organizations prefer to hire applicants with a master's degree, which students might want to consider pursuing in computer and information systems security, computer programming, or business.

The skills you will learn as a major in this field are expected to be in high demand, across an array of industries. Graduates will emerge with a thorough understanding of a wide range of areas in computer science and information technology, with an emphasis on the security aspect. They will be able to use their degrees to pursue such careers as an information security analyst, auditor, security officer, strategic planner, or disaster recovery analyst.
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