M.S. in Cybersecurity: Cyber Operations Specialization

Program Overview

Leverage both defensive and offensive tactics of cyber operations.

Cybersecurity is more than just defending against cyberattacks. Through 18 core credits and 12 specialization credits, you'll examine both defensive and offensive modes of cyber operations in Utica College's Master of Science in Cybersecurity Cyber Operations specialization.

Cybersecurity is more than just defending against cyberattacks. Through 18 core credits and 12 specialization credits, you'll examine both defensive and offensive modes of cyber operations in Utica College's Master of Science in Cybersecurity Cyber Operations specialization.

Take Advantage of Countless Opportunities

By understanding both sides of the spectrum through hands-on coursework, you'll graduate ready to detect, investigate, and prevent cybercrime for employers ranging from defense contractors to financial services to critical infrastructure.

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          Career Outlook

          As the government, businesses, and individuals continue to use more complex technologies daily — like smartwatches, IoT devices, and more — the opportunity for cybercrime is expanding exponentially. In 2017 alone, almost 180 million records were exposed through data breaches.1 As a result, organizations across industries are increasing their investment in information security. According to Forbes, global information security spending will reach $124 billion in 2019, meaning that professionals with these specialized skills can look forward to strong demand in the coming years.2

          Career Spotlight: Computer Network Defense Analyst


          As a computer network defense analyst, you could be responsible for assessing security controls and applying appropriate incident response methods to ensure critical networks are properly protected from cyberattack. You would also investigate threats, manage network access, and more.3

          Career Spotlight: Vulnerability Assessment Analyst


          As a vulnerability assessment analyst, you would be responsible for routinely testing and maintaining critical networks and infrastructure. You'll also seek out system vulnerabilities and recommend solutions that align with cyber defense best practices and current regulations.4

          Other titles you may qualify for:

          • Penetration Tester
          • Computer Network Operations Analyst


          Curriculum: Gain Practical Experience in the Virtual Classroom

          As one of the few programs in the U.S. that address cyber operations technology, this specialization uses virtual hands-on labs to help students gain critical skills in current technologies. Utica's online infrastructure provides special servers, virtual machines, and experimental environments that give students a "learn by doing" experience. Labs include penetration testing, vulnerability assessment, data hiding and steganography, anonymity, and autonomous cyber operations.

          Course Spotlight: CYB 640 – Tactics, Techniques, and Procedures

          Become acquainted with Tactics, Techniques, and Procedures (TTPs) — a foundational concept in terrorism studies — and the essential role TTP analysis plays in cybersecurity while exploring the intervening legal and ethical issues. You'll study the evolution of cyber TTPs and their use in current events and understand the development of computer network operations (CNO) from a strategic and national perspective.


          Course Spotlight: CYB 642 – Access Methods and Data Hiding

          Take an in-depth look at data-hiding techniques and access common methods, both past and present, including an up-to-the-minute review of the latest developments. Through research and practical experimentation, you'll develop an understanding of data-hiding tools, investigation techniques, and the latest countermeasures.

          You'll also have the opportunity to dive into topics like malware, exfiltration of information, and the legal, ethical, social, and cultural principles related to cyber operations.

          More Options for Your Degree

          Frequently Asked Questions

          Advancing your life and career with an online degree comes with lots of questions, and we want to ensure your search for answers is effortless. If you have a question we haven't covered, call (866) 295-3106 to speak with a program manager.

          The M.S. in Cybersecurity program is designed to be completed in less than two years by taking two classes per 16-week semester. Through 30 credit hours, you'll develop both a foundational understanding of cybersecurity principles, ethics, and critical thinking related to cybersecurity, and specialize in any of seven areas: Cyber Intelligence, Cyber Forensics, Malware Analysis, Electronic Crime, Cyber Operations, Cyber Policy, and Data Analytics.

          The National Security Agency and the Department of Homeland Security have designated Utica College as a National Center of Academic Excellence in Cyber Defense Education (CAE-CD) through academic year 2024.

          Our cybersecurity programs have also been recognized for their excellence by the Defense Cyber Crime Center (DC3) and EC-Council, one of the premier international certifying cybersecurity bodies.

          When you graduate with a new set of expert-level skills in cybersecurity, information assurance, and computer forensics, you'll be in high demand wherever you're interested in protecting data and deterring cybercrime.

          In-demand jobs are available in corporate, governmental, analytical, or investigative environments. Employment of computer and information technology occupations is projected to grow much faster than average 12 percent through 2028, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

          See our M.S. in Cybersecurity Career Outlook page for detailed information about the career paths, jobs, and earning potential that may be possible for you after graduation.

          No. While previous experience in computer and information security may provide valuable context to your studies, work history in the field is not required for admittance to the program. See our full list of admissions requirements for the M.S. in Cybersecurity program.

          The Master of Science in Cybersecurity program is a 30-credit-hour program at a cost of $895 per credit hour, for a total estimated tuition cost of $26,850. Dual-specialization students will require 42 credit hours for a total of $37,590.

          For a detailed list of all related expenses and fees, see the M.S. in Cybersecurity tuitions and fees page.

          In order to complete the program, you'll be required to complete 30 credit hours, which will include a foundational set of courses as well as your chosen specialization. Dual-specialization students will require 42 credit hours. See the full M.S. in Cybersecurity curriculum for detailed information.


          1Statista (n.d.). U.S. Data Breaches and Exposed Records 2018 | Statistic. Retrieved on November 27, 2018, from www.statista.com/statistics/273550/data-breaches-recorded-in-the-united-states-by-number-of-breaches-and-records-exposed/.
          2Aitken, R. (2018 August 19). Global Information Security Spending To Exceed $124B In 2019, Privacy Concerns Driving Demand. Retrieved November 27, 2018, from https://www.forbes.com/sites/rogeraitken/2018/08/19/global-information-security-spending-to-exceed-124b-in-2019-privacy-concerns-driving-demand/#3c99daac7112.
          3PayScale (n.d.). Average Network Defense Analyst Salary. Retrieved on April 26, 2019, from https://www.payscale.com/research/US/Job=Network_Defense_Analyst/Salary
          4PayScale (n.d.). Average Vulnerability Analyst Salary. Retrieved on April 26, 2019, from https://www.payscale.com/research/US/Job=Vulnerability_Analyst/Salary