Security Engineer Salary (United States)

Men make up the majority of Security Engineers in the United States, and the nationwide average salary in this area lies in the neighborhood of $87,197 annually. The top of the range reaches $127,123 per year, and the bottom approaches $55,338. The range in cash compensation ($55,207 to $120,830) includes potential earnings of $14,527 each from bonuses and profit sharing in exceptional cases. Career duration is the biggest factor affecting pay for this group, followed by the particular city. In this profession, the vast majority individuals enjoy medical and dental coverage, and most have vision insurance, as well. Job satisfaction is high and work is enjoyable for most Security Engineers. Participants in PayScale's salary questionnaire provided the particulars of this report.
Security Engineer Salary (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross, national 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Pay can vary greatly by location. To view local data, take the PayScale survey.
)
$55,207 - $120,830
(Median)
55K
70K
85K
100K
120K
MEDIAN: $85,177
10%
25%
50%
75%
90%
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Security Engineer Salary (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross, national 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Pay can vary greatly by location. To view local data, take the PayScale survey.
)
$21.12 - $66.04
(Median)
21
37
51
66
MEDIAN: $37.00
10%
50%
75%
90%
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National Salary Data

 (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross, national 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Pay can vary greatly by location. To view local data, take the PayScale survey.
)
$0$50K$100K$150K
Salary
$55,207 - $120,830  
   
Bonus
$0.00 - $14,527  
Profit Sharing
$1,800 - $15,126  
Total Pay (?
XTotal Pay combines base annual salary or hourly wage, bonuses, profit sharing, tips, commissions, overtime pay and other forms of cash earnings, as applicable for this job. It does not include equity (stock) compensation, cash value of retirement benefits, or the value of other non-cash benefits (e.g. healthcare).
)
$55,338 - $127,123  
PayScale
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 3 Sep 2014 | Individuals Reporting: 721
National Hourly Rate Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross, national 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Pay can vary greatly by location. To view local data, take the PayScale survey.
)
$0$25$50$75
Hourly Rate
$21.12 - $66.04  
   
Overtime
$26.80 - $67.68  
National Annualized Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross, national 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Pay can vary greatly by location. To view local data, take the PayScale survey.
)
$0$50K$100K$150K
Bonus
$0.00 - $14,527  
   
Profit Sharing
$1,800 - $15,126  
Total Pay (?
XTotal Pay combines base annual salary or hourly wage, bonuses, profit sharing, tips, commissions, overtime pay and other forms of cash earnings, as applicable for this job. It does not include equity (stock) compensation, cash value of retirement benefits, or the value of other non-cash benefits (e.g. healthcare).
)
$55,338 - $127,123  
PayScale
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 3 Sep 2014 | Individuals Reporting: 54
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Job Description for Security Engineer

Security engineers are responsible for developing effective computing solutions to increase the security of their company's systems and projects. They are in charge of creating new ways to solve existing production security issues and must possess an advanced understanding of intrusion detection and prevention protocols. One of their main responsibilities is to handle technical problems dealing with applications and production equipment. These individuals possess exceptional incident-response skills, and a high understanding of computer forensics. They assess current workflows to determine possible future issues. As a result, they work with other engineers and professionals to deploy new strategies to contain and mitigate production problems.
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Security Engineer Tasks
  • Create test plans which will allow for a proper evaluation of security issues for new hardware and software.
  • Identify security solutions and implement a multi-layered defense to protect the networks.
  • Test new or upgraded hardware and software and implement new technologies.
  • Configure and set up firewalls and intrusion detection systems.
  • Respond to network intrusions and be familiar with performing forensic investigation.

Common Career Paths for Security Engineer

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For Security Engineers, career progression may result in a considerable increase in compensation. Typically, a IT Security Architect, an upper-level role, can earn an extra $23K annually than those further down the career ladder.

Security Engineer Job Listings

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Popular Skills for Security Engineer

Security Engineers report using a pretty varied skill set on the job. Most notably, skills in Security Risk Management, Security Testing and Auditing, Computer Security, and IT Security & Infrastructure are correlated to pay that is above average, with boosts of 10 percent, 4 percent, 4 percent, and 4 percent, respectively. Most people who know IT Security & Infrastructure also know Network Security Management and Security Intrusion Detection.

Pay by Experience Level for Security Engineer

Median of all compensation (including tips, bonus, and overtime) by years of experience.
For Security Engineers, experience is not a major factor in determining pay, and incremental pay growth is standard. Beginning workers can expect to earn $77K starting out, which grows to $100K after five to 10 years. Experienced workers—those with 10 to 20 years in the field—see salaries climb into six-figure territory, bringing in about $102K. After 20 years in the field, Security Engineers see their salaries growing more slowly, eventually averaging out to $108K. Experienced employees who have 10-20 years of experience make up about a third of the workforce; inexperienced individuals who have been working for less than one year comprise less than five, and senior people with more than 20 years under their belt fill out the remaining 5 percent. One to nine years of experience is standard for most employees in this area; a majority of respondents fit between this range.

Pay Difference By Location

San Jose
up arrow 19%
up arrow 17%
up arrow 13%
Minneapolis
up arrow 13%
Los Angeles
up arrow 9%
up arrow 5%
National Average
$87,000
Atlanta
up arrow 1%
Austin
up arrow 3%
Boston
up arrow 5%
Chicago
up arrow 7%
up arrow 11%
Nashville
up arrow 16%
Larger circles over a city indicate a job is popular in that location.
Home to some of the best pay for Security Engineers, San Jose offers exceptional salaries, 19 percent above the national average. Other big spenders include San Francisco, Washington, Seattle, and Minneapolis, top-paying cities where Security Engineers see paychecks higher than average (+19 percent, +18 percent, +17 percent, and +13 percent). Nashville is the lowest-paying area, 16 percent south of the national average. Workers in Denver and Chicago earn salaries that trail the national average for those in this profession (-11 percent and -7 percent).

Related Job Salaries

Experience Affects Security Engineer Salaries

National Average
$87,000

Skills That Affect Security Engineer Salaries

Security Testing and Auditing
up arrow 4%
Computer Security
up arrow 4%
IT Security & Infrastructure
up arrow 2%
Network Security Management
up arrow 1%
Security Intrusion Detection
0%
National Average
$87,000
Security Policies and Procedures
up arrow 1%
Switches & Firewall Installation and Administration
up arrow 2%
Cisco Networking
up arrow 2%

Job Satisfaction

Highly satisfied Image
Highly satisfied
Rated 4 out of 5 based on 143 votes.

Gender

Female
8%
female alumni
 
Male
92%
male alumni

Years of Experience

Less than 1 year
3%
1-4 years
30%
5-9 years
33%
10-19 years
30%
20 years or more
5%

Common Health Benefits

medical benefits Medical: 92% dental benefits Dental: 87%
vision benefits Vision: 76% employee benefits None: 6%
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