The average compensation for security professionals in the United States this year is up 2 percent from last year to $102,000. The median salary is $90,000, up 4 percent from 2008, according to the 2009 ASIS International “U.S. Security Salary Survey Results.”
More than half (56 percent) of the survey respondents work for privately held companies, a sector reporting an average compensation of $98,000 and a median salary of $85,000. Those working for publicly held (stockholder-owned) companies report the highest average compensation at $118,000, with a median of $100,000—up 1 percent over the prior year.
Other findings from the 2009 “U.S. Security Salary Survey Results” include:
  • Federal government and law enforcement employees report an average salary of $107,000, and the highest median of any sector at $105,000.
  • Forty percent of this year’s respondents are top-level security professionals at their organization; this group earns an average salary of $118,000 and a median of $100,000.
  • Holding a core industry certification correlates to compensation that is 10 to 12 percent higher than the salaries of peers with no certification. Those holding the Certified Protection Professional (CPP) certification, for example, report an average compensation of $114,000 and a median of $104,000.
  • Education also correlates with compensation. Twenty-eight percent of respondents hold a master’s degree and report an average compensation of $112,000 and a median of $102,000.

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