What does a Data Security Analyst do?

Licia Morrow

A data security analyst works in the technology field and ensures the safety of an organization's operating systems and information. This type of information technology (IT) worker may be responsible for a wide range of activities including developing, installing, troubleshooting, and repairing computer network systems. An individual in this position will spend the majority of the work day protecting these systems from security breach or damage.

A data security analyst may be responsible for troubleshooting computer network systems.
A data security analyst may be responsible for troubleshooting computer network systems.

A big part of a data security analyst job is to work with existing systems to scrutinize the protections set in place and update or repair them as necessary. For example, an analyst might be in charge of firewalls and anti-virus programs that prevent outside parties from obtaining an organization's information or from damaging a system. This part of the job might entail installing the program, updating it on schedule, and monitoring success on computers and equipment throughout an organization.

A security analyst may be a part of the team that drafts data security compliance codes for a company.
A security analyst may be a part of the team that drafts data security compliance codes for a company.

Another set of duties that a data security analyst might perform is developing and putting these security programs into place. This may include reviewing corporate policies on an organization's security measures and ensuring that all systems are up to standards, then creating a plan to solve any gaps in security practices. A security analyst may also be a part of the team that drafts these compliance codes. In addition, a security analyst may research, preview, and approve the purchase of these types of protection programs.

Communicating with others in an organization is also an important part of the security analyst job. Depending upon the size of the company, it is necessary to communicate possible security risks to senior officials and also to work with teams of people who focus on implementing data security. A security analyst may also be responsible for training other members of an organization and doing routine audits and updates on individual systems. In some cases, a security analyst will communicate with clients about ongoing account activity. Depending upon the size of a company, an analyst may manage other employees on the IT team.

Much of a data security analyst's day consists of responding to requests and solving problems. In some cases, routine maintenance and scheduled audits fill the work day. When an employee is hired, an analyst such as this might be involved to install any necessary network equipment and software. When a system is disabled, or if security is breached, the data security analyst will be responsible for a solution.

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Discussion Comments


@KoiwiGal - I don't know how often that actually happens though. I think it's happened a couple of times, and those times have been widely publicized and that's why people think it happens quite a bit.

More often, I think data security analysts just learn from their own work. They don't need to learn from hacking into other people's systems. And honestly, I think they could just hang out on computer notice boards to find out the latest methods of cracking a system and how to country it with different types of network security.


I always thought it was kind of awesome in a way that some of the data security analysts for major companies were once hackers.

They pretty much hired them because they knew all the holes that could exist in a system and because they might understand the motives of people trying to get in.

Unfortunately, I think that might encourage young people to become hackers, in order to become network security specialists and get an advantage over others.

But, generally, I think you need some notoriety in order to cash in on your abilities and that can include jail time. So that's hopefully a deterrent.

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