Cyber Security Salaries in Canada for 2024

Last updated May 9, 2024

While digitization becomes the norm across global markets, so is the prevalence of cybercrimes and the need for people equipped to fulfill cyber security roles across public and private sectors.

In fact, since the COVD-19 pandemic, Canada has experienced a substantial increase in cyberthreats and ransomware attacks, prompting the Federal Government of Canada to indicate an “urgent need” for cyber security professionals across all government departments.

“Cyber security needs exist in any organization that has information exchanged, and it’s an industry with a lot of opportunity,” says Hardeep Kaur, Product Manager at Lighthouse Labs, a technology education company and leading provider of cyber security courses in Canada.

Yet in an industry with almost no unemployment, one in six cyber security job postings go unfilled in Canada, according to a 2022 report—Cyber security Talent Development: Protecting Canada’s Digital Economy—from the Information and Communications Technology Council (ICTC).  The report notes that Canada’s cyber security talent deficit is even more pronounced than in the U.S. because we lack a nationally implemented framework of required skills this side of the border, and experience frequent “talent poaching” by foreign firms offering more lucrative compensation packages. However, as the industry keeps evolving and the demand for talent keeps growing, ICTC expects favourable opportunities in the Canadian sector will only expand in scope.

Cyber Security Training and Certification

Given the evolving nature of the cyber security sector, education and training pathways aren’t clear-cut. Various Canadian postsecondary institutions provide instruction in cyber security, although bachelor’s and master’s programs solely focused on cyber security are rare. Certifications, bootcamps and other emerging education formats are often popular ways to acquire cyber security training, and previous job experience plays a key factor too. Job postings in cyber security often require a bachelor’s degree in information technology, computer science or engineering, and may request other certifications. Those considering this career path may want to start with a good foundational certification such as CompTIA Security+. The Canadian Centre for Cyber security offers a list of some of the most popular cyber certifications available, as well as recognized certification bodies.

“Many working in the field have transitioned from IT, but business and resource management experience, combined with solid communication skills, can also translate to a great cyber security role,” says Kaur.

Cyber Security Salaries in Canada 

Using current salary data from and ZipRecruiter, CourseCompare has compiled a list of prime cyber security roles in Canada.

RoleAverage Salary in Canada
Chief Information Security Officer (CISO)$179,557
Cyber Security Architect$128,380
Cybercrime Investigator / Digital Forensic Investigator$102,764
Cyber Security / Network Security Manager$100,543
Cyber Security or Penetration Tester$96,675
IT Security Specialist / Cyber Security Specialist or Analyst$96,372
Cyber Security Consultant$88,029
Digital Forensics Analyst$83,192
Security Administrator$69,033
Security Engineer$67,209
Malware Analyst$64,793
Cyber Security Intern$50,648

Below you’ll find the primary responsibilities and average salaries for some common roles within the cyber security sector.

Chief Information Security Officer (CISO) – $179,557

A CISO is a senior-level executive who oversees a company’s information, cyber and technology security. The role also requires developing, implementing, and enforcing security policies. Many employers require CISOs to have bachelor’s degree in computer science, information technology, business, or cyber security, along with several years of leadership experience.

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Cyber Security Architect – $128,380

This technical role involves designing, implementing, and maintaining security solutions and infrastructure. Job candidates will benefit from having a bachelor’s degree in cyber security, information technology or computer science.

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Cyber Security / Network Security Manager – $100,543

In addition to protecting the organization’s computer network by troubleshooting issues, a cyber security manager may be responsible for directing other IT professionals working as a team to promote digital security in the company. The role requires a bachelor or master’s degree, along with experience in IT management.

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Cybercrime Investigator / Digital Forensic Investigator – $102,764

As the title implies, this role requires investigating cybercrimes and working to stop cybercriminals. This can entail recovering data from computers and other digital storage media to be used as evidence in court, interviewing witnesses and determining which cyber incidents are violating laws. Investigators also work for law enforcement agencies, government, or private organizations. A bachelor’s degree in criminal justice or the equivalent is an asset for this role.

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IT Security Specialist / Cyber Security Specialist or Analyst – $96,372

This role primarily involves monitoring and responding to security incidents, as well as investigating potential threats and mitigating risk. Job candidates will benefit from having a bachelor’s degree in cyber security and information technology or engineering.

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Cyber Security Consultant – $88,029

Cyber security consultants identify security issues, assess risks, and implement solutions. They perform tests to identify vulnerabilities while also designing and implementing strategies to improve organizational cyber security.  A bachelor’s degree is beneficial, and those who start as junior members of an IT team typically need one to three years of experience before taking on this role.

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Cyber Security or Penetration Tester – $96,675

In this role, performing simulated cyberattacks on an organization’s computer systems and network is par for the course to identify where are there are vulnerabilities before cybercriminals do. The role requires advanced computer skills and a keen ability to anticipate a hacker’s actions.

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Digital Forensics Analyst – $83,192

This type of analyst looks at digital evidence and computer security incidents to derive useful information to support the network against future attacks or vulnerabilities. The role requires a bachelor’s degree, certifications and several years of experience.

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Security Administrator – $69,033

Ensuring a company’s computer system is running optimally is the central role of the security administrator. This entails updating the system when needed, fixing issues and setting up new users as needed in a safe and secure manner. Security administrators should have completed a computer science degree and secured cyber security certifications.

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Security Engineer – $67,209

Security engineers focus on implementing security measures across an organization. They may troubleshoot new security measures, coordinate responses to security breaches and help the IT team develop ways to help avoid future issues. Cyber security certifications are typically required for this role.

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Malware Analyst – $64,793

A key part of this role is to stay on top of the latest developments in malware, which is software specifically designed to disrupt, damage, or gain unauthorized access to computer systems. With the rapidly changing nature of malware, analysts are constantly learning on the job to stay on top of cyber criminals’ latest techniques. Job candidates will benefit from having a bachelor’s degree in computer science or engineering.

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Cyber Security Intern – $50,648

A temporary position, the intern gains supervised experience doing some of the common administrative tasks of a cyber security analyst.

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Beyond Tech Skills

Technology experience translates well into the cyber security world because many roles revolve around protecting an organization’s digital infrastructure. But beyond IT skills, Lighthouse Lab’s Kaur says there are many other sought-after attributes that employers are seeking in filling cyber security positions.

The ability to collaborate and effectively communicate are high on the list. In interviews with senior executives over a span of three months, she says a unanimous ask from employers across the board was candidates with a commitment to learning. That could be demonstrated by obtaining certifications, she says, or by showing a proven ability to network and connect. “Don’t get tied to a particular title or you can short-change yourself,” she says. “There are other ways to get credible experience that can translate into cyber security roles.”

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