The Master of Science in Information Technology degree with a specialization in Information Assurance and Security is designed for students looking to become leaders in the fields of digital security, information collection and preservation, and security system creation.
This one-year master’s program is designed to help students get the in-depth, industry-current business knowledge they want—compressing their studies into a shorter timeframe, but still providing the knowledge and credentials they're looking for to get ahead professionally.
In this specialized curriculum, you can learn the skills needed to protect an organization’s information assets. The important areas covered include threats and vulnerabilities, cryptography, authentication and access control, security models, network security, trusted computer systems, distributed-systems security, World Wide Web security, applications security, information-systems audit, and security management and policies.
We can help you learn how to:
- Identify the physical and logical threats and vulnerabilities present in new and an existing information system infrastructure
- Identify relevant security technologies and techniques needed to secure an information infrastructure.
- Implement technical and administrative control measures to protect information assets and comply with regulatory standards
- Conduct an analysis of an existing and new information systems infrastructure
- Conduct information systems audit
In this industry-focused curriculum, you’ll have an opportunity to learn how to use secure protocols over networked systems using cryptography. You can also explore current issues in network security and apply security concepts. Courses focus on technical topics as well as privacy and policy issues.
At AIU, you can take more courses you can take more courses devoted to your field of interest, on average, than at other similar schools. For a Master of Science in Information Technology with a specialization in Information Assurance and Security, your classes can include:
Principles of Information Systems
In this course students examine management skills as they relate to the information technology industry, taking into account the relationship between networking, databases, and programming.
Principles of Information Security
This course covers information security technologies as applied to operating systems, database management systems, and computer networks. The three major goals of information security, confidentiality, integrity and availability, are introduced. Threats, vulnerability, exposure, risks, identity management, incidents response, the state machine model and disaster recovery are also covered.
Applied Cryptography and Network Security
In this course, students learn to apply secure protocols over networked systems using cryptography. Symmetric and asymmetric encryption is covered. Other topics that are also covered include one way function, hash, cryptography arithmetic, public key infrastructure, Digital Signature Algorithm and Internet security issues.
Legal Issues in Information Security and Incident Response
In this course, students explore current issues in network security and apply security concepts. The class focuses on technical topics as well as privacy and policy issues. Computer crimes, evidence presentation, chain of custody and introduction to the United States criminal justice system are also covered.
IT Auditing and Security Risk Management
The course covers information systems control, application audit, security threats, security risk types, computer attacks, countermeasures, and risk management. Risk assessment methodologies, certification, accreditation, information systems auditing and metrics for measuring an organization's information security program are also covered in this course.
During this course students analyze and apply the fundamentals of object-oriented application development.
Database System Design and Implementation
In this course students will focus on the design and implementation of a relational database management system, including concepts such as data extraction and data manipulation.
In this course students examine computer networking concepts, which enable them to translate business objectives into a physical network design. Students will be expected to collect and analyze appropriate information to make context-appropriate, network-related, business decisions.
What could you do with a degree in Information Assurance and Security?
To combat the loss of sensitive data and to ensure customer protection, companies are investing more in information security than ever before.
Earning a master’s in Information Assurance and Security can demonstrate that you have a passion for the subject, knowledge of both the academic theory and current practices, and experience in the field. And the investment could prove advantageous: according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, people who have a master's degree earn 18% more per week than those with a bachelor's degree.1
Specialties in Information Security
It can be helpful to think about information security as an industry where roles are, in a sense, divided into three categories:
- Creating security, such as security software development or cryptology
- Maintaining security, like security administration
- Testing security, such as breach testing
Roles in Information Security
The MSIT in Information Assurance and Security can prepare students for more advanced roles in:
- Information security analysis
- Information security analysis
- Security engineering
- Security architecture
- Source code auditing
- Security consulting
Industries That Use Information Security
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, more than half of the jobs in information security are clustered in these five industries:
- Computer-systems design and related services
- Management of companies and enterprises
- Depository credit intermediation
- Management, scientific, and technical consulting services2
With 18% growth projected through 2024—much faster than average, per the BLS3—information security could be a worthwhile career to pursue for anyone interested in an IT master’s degree.
2Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2016-17 Edition, Information Security Analysts,
on the Internet at http://www.bls.gov/ooh/computer-and-information-technology/information-security-analysts.htm (visited July 29, 2016)