What is cyber law?

Career Paths in Information Security: What is Cyber Law?


Cyber law, also known as cyber crime law, is legislation focused on the acceptable behavioral use of technology including computer hardware and software, the internet, and networks. Cyber law helps protect users from harm by enabling the investigation and prosecution of online criminal activity. It applies to the actions of individuals, groups, the public, government, and private organizations.

Cyber Law Definition and Global Impact

What is cyber law's role in society and business? Cyber crimes include fraud, forgery, money laundering, theft, and other illegal activities performed via computer hardware and software, the internet, and networks. Cyber law investigates crimes perpetrated in the physical world but enabled in cyberspace. For example, organized crime syndicates using the internet to distribute illegal substances may face prosecution under cyber laws. In business, cyber law protects companies from unlawful access and theft of their intellectual property.

What is cyber law in different countries? While cyber crime impacts the global community, the adoption of cyber crime legislation varies among countries. Seventy-two percent of countries have cyber laws, 9% have draft legislation, and 18% have no cyber laws, according to 2019 data from the United Nations. Many states develop new cyber laws as addenda to their current codes. Some countries amend their existing national codes with legislative language on cyber crime.

Essential Skills in Cybersecurity

Strong analytical skills, combined with soft skills such as communication and critical thinking competencies, are necessary for professional roles in cybersecurity and cyber law. Norwich University's online Master of Science in Cybersecurity program prepares graduates to pursue leadership positions in careers related to cyber law.

Other essential skills for those seeking careers related to cybersecurity and cyber law include competency with security tools and knowledge of security analysis, project management, and data analytics.

  • Security Tools: Security tools help organizations prevent and defend against cyber crime, enabling a quick recovery from damages related to a cyber attack. For example, a security information management tool can enhance visibility across a network’s infrastructure, while providing details of specific cyber incidents.
  • Security Analysis: Understanding how security tools fit into the cyber risk management strategy of an organization is essential. In addition to addressing known threats, identifying and analyzing risks is important to minimize successful cyber attacks.
  • Project Management: Adding new tools and software to the IT infrastructure creates more management complexity. While security experts determined the best antivirus, spam filtering, and other security tools, project management directs their successful integration and acceptance throughout the organization.
  • Data Analytics: While security tools provide vital data to identify and mitigate cyber threats, data without insight delivers little benefit. Data analytics help security professionals to decipher collected data to identify new and emerging threats and determine effective countermeasures.

Norwich is fostering a new generation of cybersecurity experts. Through its online Master of Science in Cybersecurity program, students learn about business, governance, and policy aspects of information security as well as security best practices, regulatory environment, management strategies, and global governance frameworks.

The program's concentration in Cyber Law & International Perspectives on Cyberspace provides students with knowledge on privacy and intellectual property, electronic contracting, non-repudiation, fair information practices, and other legal and policy measures related to cyber breaches.

Course content investigates cyber laws in the U.S. and other countries. For example, how do cyber laws impact cybersecurity across borders? Case in point: The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) is a law passed with the intent of protecting the personal data and privacy of citizens in the European Union (EU). Students will examine GDPR and gain perspectives on how U.S. cybersecurity professionals can help organizations that conduct business with the EU comply with international laws.

Potential Careers

People who ask “what is cyber law?” may be interested in learning about careers in the field. Here are a few professional opportunities related to cybersecurity and cyber law that graduates may pursue after completing an advanced degree.

Cybersecurity Engineer

Cybersecurity engineers remain vigilant in minimizing the impacts of system security risks derived from different sources such as foreign and domestic cyber attacks, wireless intrusions, disgruntled employees, and unauthorized usage of computers. Cybersecurity engineers typically are involved in network design, user account management, and process and policy creation to limit potential security breaches. The median annual salary for this position is $94,869, according to October 2019 data from the compensation website PayScale.

Security Compliance Manager

A security compliance manager analyzes complex data to support risk management efforts and lead compliance projects and programs. Security compliance managers must remain current on compliance issues to provide knowledgeable advice on how regulatory change impacts an organization. These professionals also ascertain the risk associated with specific business actions such as mergers, acquisitions, overseas sales, and more. The median annual salary for security compliance managers is $103,212, according to October 2019 PayScale data.

Chief Risk Officer

A chief risk officer, or CRO, is the top-most executive responsible for setting policy and administering risk management efforts. This professional typically possesses a background in technology, accounting, economics, and/or the law. CROs implement internal controls and regularly conduct internal audits. They mitigate information security issues, protect against fraud, and guard intellectual property on behalf of their organizations. The median annual salary for CROs is $152,509, according to October 2019 PayScale data.

Chief Information Security Officer

As a top executive, a chief information security officer, or CISO, oversees all aspects of information and data security. This IT professional manages teams responsible for security operations and informs board-level decision-makers about security threats deriving from all manner of business activities. The CISO oversees data loss and fraud prevention, security architecture, and identity and access management. The professional also determines the causes of a breach and develop strategies to avoid future violations. In addition, the CISO acquires funding for all information security initiatives by presenting the business case for security investments to corporate leaders. The median annual salary for CISOs is $159,650, according to October 2019 PayScale data.

Prepare for a Career in Cybersecurity

Norwich University's online Master of Science in Cybersecurity degree prepares professionals for roles in cybersecurity including positions related to cyber law. Graduates embrace a well-rounded curriculum that provides knowledge on how to protect information assets in complex business and government organizations. Learn how you can pursue a rewarding career in the important, evolving, and growing field of information security.


Recommended Reading

How Critical Infrastructure Protection Fits into a Cybersecurity Career
Information Assurance vs. Information Security
The 5 Pillars of Information Assurance


Cyberlaw, The Law Dictionary
The Role of Cybercrime Law, United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime
Cybercrime Legislation Worldwide, United Nations Conference on Trade and Development
10 Critical Security Skills Every IT Team Needs, CIO
Master of Science in Cybersecurity, Norwich University
General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR): What You Need to Know to Stay Compliant, CSO
Network Systems Security Engineer Risks, Houston Chronicle
Average Cyber Security Engineer Salary, PayScale
Job Roles & Salaries, International Compliance Association
A Day in the Life of a Compliance Officer, International Compliance Association
Average Compliance Manager, IT Security Products Salary, PayScale
Chief Risk Officer (CRO), Investopedia
Average Chief Risk Officer (CRO) Salary, PayScale
What is a CISO? Responsibilities and Requirements for This Vital Leadership Role, CSO
Average Chief Information Security Officer Salary, PayScale

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