Florida Cybersecurity Certificate and Associate's Degree

According to Florida Trend, 300,000 consumer complaints were logged by the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s (FBI) Internet Crime Complaint Center nationally in 2017. Losses of $1.4 billion were reported that year. Of that number, 21,887 victims were from Florida (second only to California in number of victims of cybercrime in 2017). Cybercriminals in Florida made $47.3 million in 2017, the third-highest amount in the nation gleaned from cybercrime in states. Floridians lost $110.6 million to cybercriminals that year. The top cybercrimes in Florida in 2017 were:

  • Non-payment/non-delivery (of goods or services)
  • Personal data breaches
  • Identity thefts
  • Phishing
  • Overpayment

The majority of victims of cybercrime in Florida in 2017 were over the age of 60, with victims ages 50 to 59 in second place. 

Cybercrime is a major problem in Florida, the nation’s third most populated state. It makes sense that the largest victim group would be those over the age of 60, as 23.4 percent of Florida’s population is over age 60 (and the second-highest crime group by victim age, ages 50 to 59, make up 36.9 percent of the state’s population). This is clearly a major concern for the state of Florida, and one in which more educated and trained cybersecurity professionals are needed to fight cybercrime. If you would like to become one of these professionals, keep reading to discover how you can get an associate degree or certificate in cybersecurity in the state of Florida. 

Florida’s Cybersecurity in the News 

The Cybersecurity Forum 2020 was announced as a virtual event to be held on September 16 and 17, 2020. It is co-hosted by the Foundation of Associated Industries of Florida, Florida Department of Economic Opportunity, FloridaMakes, and Workers’ Compensation Institute. The virtual event will offer, in an educational setting, best practices on cybersecurity for businesses and professionals. It is also slated to offer an overview of the new, federally-mandated Cybersecurity Maturity Model Certification standards and practices for Florida companies that must comply with them to maintain business operations.  The s Acting Chairman of the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, and Chairman of the Senate Committee on Small Business and Entrepreneurship, Marco Rubio, will be a featured speaker in the forum, along with cybersecurity experts from various industries. 

Cybersecurity Jobs for Associate Degree/Certificate Holders in Florida

Entry-level cybersecurity jobs in Florida are often attainable with an associate degree or certificate in a cybersecurity-related area. Examples of Florida jobs that might be attainable with such a degree or certificate include:

  • Junior Information Security Analyst – Sayres & Associates Corporation, Orlando
  • Information Security Analyst Associate – General Dynamics IT, Patrick Air Force Base
  • Cyber Security Analyst – Liberty IT Solutions, Melbourne
  • Classified Cyber Security Analyst – Lockheed Martin, Orlando 
  • Associate IT Security Specialist – Kforce, Inc., Jacksonville
  • Information Technology Security Analyst – Faro Technologies, Lake Mary
  • Security Analyst Information Technology – Addition Financial Credit Union, Lake Mary
  • Security Analyst – Fiserv, Pompano Beach
  • Cyber Security Analyst – Moffitt Cancer Center, Tampa
  • Cyber Engineer I – Raytheon, Tampa

Associate Cybersecurity Degree Programs in Florida

The following associate in cybersecurity degree programs are offered in Florida:

  • Associate of Science in IT Security
  • Associate of Science in Computer Information Technology
  • Associate of Science in Networking Administrator
  • Associate of Science in Cyber and Information Security
  • Associate of Science in Cyber Security 

Florida’s Associate Degree and Certificate Cybersecurity Programs 

Any Florida institution at which you choose to study should be accredited by a regional accreditation agency that is recognized by the Council for Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA).  

Centers of Academic Excellence (CAE)

The National Security Agency (NSA) and the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) established the National Centers of Academic Excellence program to recognize the best undergraduate and graduate cybersecurity degree programs in the United States, calling these programs Centers of Academic Excellence in Cyber Defense (CAE-CD).

Centers of Academic Excellence in Cyber Defense Education in Florida

The following Florida associate degree and certificate programs have been designated Centers of Academic Excellence in Cyber Defense Education (CAE-CD):

1200 W. International Speedway Blvd.

Daytona Beach, FL 32114

CAE- Cyber Defense Education- Accredited through 2021

Patrick Vilkinofsky, Asst. Professor

(386) 506-4183; [email protected] 

Dept. of Computer & Information Sciences, Center for Cyber Security

1601 S. Martin L. King Jr. Blvd.

Tallahassee, FL 32307

CAE- Cyber Defense Education- Accredited through 2022

Dr. Hongmei Chi, Head of the Cyber Security Program of Study

(850) 412-7355; [email protected] 

  • Florida State College at Jacksonville – 

Associate of Science in IT Security

Technical Certificate in Digital Forensics

Center for Cyber Security

101 West State Street

Jacksonville, FL 32202

CAE- Cyber Defense Education- Accredited through 2023

Ernest M. Friend, Instructional Program Manager

(904) 598-5650; [email protected] 

  • Indian River State College – 

Associate of Science in Computer Information Technology

Cyber Defense Certificate

Cyber Center of Excellence

3209 Virginia Ave.

Fort Pierce, FL 34981

CAE- Cyber Defense Education- Accredited through 2023

Steve Nicholson, Contact

(772) 462-7145; [email protected] 

College of Engineering & Computer Science

4000 Central Florida Blvd.

Orlando, FL 32816

CAE- Cyber Defense Education- Accredited through 2021

(407) 823-2000

College of Education, Dept. of Instructional Technology

4202 E. Fowler Ave.

Tampa, FL 33612

CAE- Cyber Defense Education- Accredited through 2022

Dr. Nasir Ghani, Contact

(813) 974-4772; [email protected] 

Florida Associate Degree Cybersecurity Program Classes

Courses that you will find in an associate degree cybersecurity program in Florida focus on:

  • Hardware Configuration
  • Software Configuration
  • Fundamentals of Information Security
  • Operating Systems Foundations
  • Network Fundamentals
  • Routing & Switching Fundamentals
  • Server Configuration
  • Data Forensics
  • Intrusion Detection Systems and Auditing
  • Techniques of Computer Hacking & Incident Handling
  • Offensive Security-Advanced Penetration Testing

Cybersecurity Certificates in Florida 

There are many certificates in cybersecurity offered at colleges and universities in Florida, in addition to those listed above, both at the undergraduate and graduate levels. They include, but are not limited to:

  • Cybersecurity Certificate- Valencia College
  • Digital Forensics Certificate – Valencia College
  • Graduate Certificate in Information Security – University of Florida
  • Graduate Certificate in Hardware & System Security – University of Florida
  • Certificate in Cybersecurity – St. Petersburg College
  • College Credit Certificate in Network Security – Palm Beach State College

Salaries for Cybersecurity Workers in Florida 

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) of the U.S. Department of Labor, the average mean wage for information security analysts working in Florida in May 2019 was $91,580. Those working in various parts of the state earned higher than the average wage, as noted below:

  • North Port/Sarasota/Bradenton: $109,700
  • Palm Bay/Melbourne/Titusville: $106,450
  • Gainesville: $105,920
  • Port St. Lucie: $103,420
  • Pensacola/Ferry Pass/Brent: $100,060
  • Orlando/Kissimmee/Sanford: $96,660
  • Cape Coral/Ft. Myers: $92,070