Opportunities are plentiful in the cybersecurity career field. The gap continues to widen between the number of available qualified professionals and the staffing level organizations need to address their ever-growing privacy and cyber-risk concerns.
Companies and agencies have started looking for solutions to the skills shortage by hiring outside of the IT department and implementing artificial intelligence-based support tools. Even then, skilled cybersecurity professionals are in high demand, and job openings abound.
That said, those looking to accelerate their cyber careers should know that the number and quality of opportunities will vary by location. Today, we’ll take a quick look at which states have the best prospects for cybersecurity professionals, in terms of both availability and average pay.
The Best State for Cybersecurity Jobs
According to a recent report from Comparitech, Virginia holds the distinction of being the best state for cybersecurity professionals. It boasts the largest number of people currently employed in cybersecurity, the highest employment per 1,000 jobs, rapid expansion in the number of employed workers and strong average salaries.
Virginia isn’t the best in every aspect, of course.
- New York, for instance, offers an average annual salary of $122,000, compared to Virginia’s $111,780. But depending on where you live in each state, Virginia’s average salary might go farther than New York’s.
- New Mexico has the highest percentage difference compared to the state average annual salary for all types of employment – a whopping 80.34%.
There’s also the question of opportunities for career advancement. A few states stand out on that front.
- South Dakota boasts the highest five-year rate in information security employment numbers (+212.50%).
- Arkansas boasts the best five-year growth in average annual salary (+41.69%).
- Utah has the best long-term projection for roles (50%).
- California has the highest number of advertised cybersecurity jobs (5,008).
All factors considered, here are Comparitech’s five best and five worst among the 50 states, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico.
The Top 5
- New York
- North Carolina
The Bottom 5
- Puerto Rico
For those looking in the Washington, D.C., metropolitan area, check out Lunarline, which is a top cybersecurity employer in the state of Virginia. We’ve helped many professionals take their careers to the next level, and we’re always on the lookout for talented recruits.
To learn more, contact us online today.