Careers

What Does Cryptologist Mean?

Cryptologist
Written by Godwin Ekpo

What does cryptologist mean? Cryptanalysis and cryptography are two aspects of the wide, intricate field of cryptology. Discover the requirements for becoming a cryptologist. Discover the job opportunities in cryptology and make a plan for your future encrypting and decrypting messages.

Number theory, practical formulas, and algorithms that underlie cryptography and cryptanalysis are all parts of the wide, complicated science of cryptology. The need for cryptologists has grown with the advent of the digital age.

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Cryptology: What is it?

Cryptology is the study of how to transform plain text into ciphertext and vice versa. Research on encryption and decoding is referred to as cryptology. A person is referred to as a cryptologist once they have studied cryptology and are capable of creating a secure communication channel. To decode and create encoded messages, cryptologists examine and evaluate data and patterns. You would therefore be proficient in both linguistics and mathematics.

Today, cryptologists have a wide range of professional opportunities. All of these organizations—from electronic banking to military intelligence, governments, and private businesses—use legal databases of some kind and rely on cryptology for security.

Responsibilities

The following duties are typical for those in the field of cryptography:

  • Creating algorithms to hide computer data, such as e-commerce, banking, security codes, passwords, and email communications
  • Defending information and data against hackers and cyberterrorists
  • Establishing secure software systems, processes, and protocols
  • Using mathematical equations and theories to decode data while also examining various computer-generated models
  • Adding crypto-analysis to the mix is part of this position. In order to decode the legible text, they research the hidden coding schemes.

Regular Work Hours

The majority of cryptologists normally work a full-time schedule of 40 hours per week. They frequently work for government organizations or the military, where they decipher or create codes and riddles to safeguard sensitive or private data. Their work schedule is typically relatively consistent, although on rare occasions they are under pressure to unravel a complicated mystery or handle a dangerous situation. This is more frequently required when fighting a war, stopping terrorist attacks, or looking into serious crimes.

Future Job Growth

Numerous security services are using more and more cryptologists to interpret messages and codes in other languages in order to find potential domestic and worldwide terrorist threats. During the cold war, there was a noticeable surge in the demand for cryptologists, and it has recently intensified since the 9/11 terrorist attacks. There isn’t much data on the number of cryptologists or the demand for this occupation because of the nature of the work.

To do the job effectively, one must have a high degree of mathematics and statistical knowledge, as well as actual computer programming experience, as well as excellent quantitative and data analysis skills. Advanced mathematical methods, modeling, and the capacity for data interpretation and presentation ought to provide you a competitive edge in this industry. It might also need for an understanding of several languages, even archaic ones.

Salary and Employment Forecast for Cryptology

According to SalaryExpert, as of September 2022 [1], the average yearly pay for cryptologists in the United States is $126,439. Jobs in mathematics and statistics, such as cryptologists, are anticipated to rise at a healthy pace of 31 percent between 2021 and 2031, according to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS).

Common Employers

To install, maintain, and repair any cryptography systems as well as to ensure the security of the coded signals and to intercept and decode messages from other nations or potential threats, cryptologists mostly work for the military in various areas. They might also work for various government organizations, such as homeland security, the FBI, and the CIA, which need their expertise to identify potential threats like terrorist strikes in advance.

They may also decide to work for private companies that employ cryptologists to safeguard confidential data against corporate espionage. Some cryptographers can also find employment in the gaming sector, where they can use their expertise to create puzzles or video games.

How to Start a Career in Cryptography or Cryptology

Typically, a bachelor’s degree in mathematics, computer science, or a closely related discipline is required to become a cryptographer. They must be able to uncover weaknesses in systems even when none appear to exist. For this position, you must have a high level of mathematical proficiency as well as knowledge of complicated information and technology systems. Exceptional problem-solving ability, excellent communication talents, and a propensity for tracking down crooks.

The National Security Agency and other government organizations frequently scout out and consult with cryptographers. Many of them are consultants who work for numerous businesses and organizations. Those who do eventually work for government organizations must be able to pass a polygraph test, background check, and fingerprinting procedure.

How Does the Wage of Cryptologists Compare to those of Other Professions Nationwide?

According to the most recent statistics on employment across the country, cryptographers or cryptologists can earn an average annual salary of $112,560, or $54 per hour. Depending on the state you live in or perhaps when just starting out, they can make as little as $81,590, or $39 per hour.

How Has Job Growth for Cryptologists Compared to Other Professions Nationwide?

For a total of 4,200 persons employed in the career nationwide by 2024, 700 jobs will change. This represents a 20% shift in growth over the following ten years, giving the career an above-average growth rate nationally.

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Godwin Ekpo

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