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When most people think of hackers, they imagine underground criminals who are experts at breaking into even the most secure servers and networks. However, you might be surprised to learn that there are completely legal master's degrees that teach you the ins and outs of hacking. A master's degree in hacking and counter hacking is vital in order to train individuals to counter the hackers that work to destroy cyberspace.

Counter hackers are employed by everyone from banks to government agencies, so earning this degree online can be a fantastic way to prepare for a new career and earn an impressive salary.

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What Will You Learn in This Master's Degree?

The overall objective of the master's degree in hacking and counter hacking is to teach students how to identify breaches in a security network, recover stolen data and trace hackers. To do this, in many ways, you will have to learn to think and act like a hacker and beat them at their own game.

Some of the skills that this degree program will cover might include understanding operating systems like Linux and OS, learning how to erase digital tracks when investigating, understanding the most common types of cyber attacks and cracking user names and passwords when necessary.

In addition to these skills, you will learn the ethical conduct of counter hackers and how to use your skills for the good of cyber security rather than its detriment.

What are the Prerequisites for Enrollment?

While some certificates and undergraduate programs do exist in hacking and counter hacking, they are very limited. It is much more common to find master's degree programs, but they have a number of prerequisites that applicants will need to meet in order to formally enroll.

You should already have a bachelor's degree in a related field, which might be network security, information technology or even computer science. You may also need to submit GRE scores or proof of your undergraduate grade point average.

What are the Career Opportunities for Graduates in Counter Hacking?

After graduating with this master's degree, there will be high demand for your skills. On average, ethical hackers can earn $89,000 annually, and that number only goes up with experience. You can work as an online security consultant for a retail company or a financial institution, or you can seek employment with a government agency like the FBI, NSA or CIA.

What are the Benefits of Earning This Degree Online?

Most of what you will study in this degree relates directly to computers. For that reason, it is easy to cover all of the subject matter from the comfort of home as long as you have access to a computer. Plus, the flexibility of online study allows you to work while you pursue an advanced education.

If you are ready to take your IT career to the next level, earning an online master's degree in hacking and counter hacking could be the perfect choice.