One of the first questions one might ask when choosing a career is, “Does it pay well?” When it comes to cybersecurity, the answer is “Yes!” with an average reported salary of $147,138 in the U.S. Not only is cybersecurity a challenging career with a mission that benefits us all, but it is also financially lucrative for many in this high-demand field.

Our annual workforce study received more responses than ever before, close to 15,000 participants. About a third of these respondents came from the U.S., giving us a robust participant pool from which to confidently share insights around U.S. salaries. For this article, we focus on cybersecurity salaries in the U.S. only, where we asked participants to share their base annual salary before taxes. All currency is expressed as U.S. Dollars.

Digging Deeper: Salaries by Seniority

Not surprisingly, salaries vary across experience and job levels, with a steady progression from entry- and junior-level roles to C-Suite and executives. We also see significant disparity between genders, underlining the continued existence of the gender pay gap in cybersecurity:

  • Entry- and junior-level respondents report an average annual salary of $86K
  • Nonmanagerial, mid-advanced staff earn an average annual salary of $137K
  • Managers earn an average of $149K
  • Directors and middle managers earn an average of $175K
  • C-suite and executive management earn an average of $215K

US annual cybersecurity salary by Job Level 

The U.S. salary rates at each of the seniority levels are highly encouraging, especially when compared to the median U.S. wage of $59,428, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Exploring Salaries by Gender

However, there is a significant disparity when we break up those levels of seniority by gender:

  • Women nonmanagerial, mid-advanced staff earn $131K, which is 5% less than what men earn ($138K)
  • Women managers earn $138K, 9% less than what men in the same roles earn ($150K)
  • Women at the director and middle-manager level eliminate the gap with $177K annual salaries compared to men making 175K (1% more)
  • Women in the C-suite and executive level earn an average salary of $220K, which is 4% more than the average salary for men in the same roles

Comparing U.S. cybersecurity salaries by level and gender 

Cybersecurity Salaries by Race and Ethnicity

We also explored pay disparities by ethnicity for those working in the cybersecurity profession.

Most of our U.S. respondents (80%) are White. We also had respondents who identify as Black or African American (8%), Hispanic or Latinx (7%), East Asian or Southeast Asian (7%), South Asian (4%), and American Indian or Alaska Native (2%).

  • Cybersecurity professionals of South Asian descent earn the most in our study at $155K, followed by ethnic East and Southeast Asians at $151K
  • Whites earn $148K
  • American Indians and Alaska Natives earn $147K
  • Hispanics/Latinx and Blacks/African Americans earn the lowest salaries at $136K and $132K, respectively.

Race and ethicity U.S. cybersecurity professional earnings 

Cybersecurity Pay Disparity by Race/Ethnicity and Gender

White men had the highest annual salaries at $149K, while Nonwhite women had the lowest, at $136K, or 90% of what the White men earn.

Salary by ethicity and gender 


People working in the cybersecurity profession earn strong salaries in the U.S. regardless of their job level, gender or ethnicity. While pay disparity remains a challenge for the field, cybersecurity seems to have more pay parity than the broader U.S. labor market. While salary has historically not been a top motivator for people to pursue a cybersecurity career, our research suggests that organizations that focus on addressing pay disparities have more engaged cybersecurity teams and are more effective at minimizing the impact of workforce gaps.

Check out these helpful resources

Research 2023 ISC2 Cybersecurity Workforce Study

Research Women and People of Color Detail Experiences Working in Cybersecurity