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Cybersecurity Firm Tops List of Highest-Paying Companies

New research has shown that cybercrime really does pay, but not for the people you'd expect. 

A study conducted by a company review site to find out which firms are the most generous when it comes to remuneration found that the best-paying gig was to be had at an American multinational cybersecurity company. 

Glassdoor's list of the 25 highest-paying companies in the US for 2019 was topped by Palo Alto Networks, which has its headquarters in Santa Clara, California. The cybersecurity firm, which employs over 5,000 people around the world, rewards workers for their efforts with a median total salary of $170,929. This figure dwarfs the Bay Area's average median base pay, which is $73,128. 

After reporting a 29% year-over-year increase in revenue for the 2018 fiscal year, in which they made $2.3bn, Palo Alto Networks certainly has the cash to splash. Such bountiful paychecks are likely to have been a contributing factor when Palo Alto Networks was ranked number one as "best place to work" in the Bay Area by SF Business Times in 2016.

"Not surprisingly, tech companies dominate the list of high-paying employers, including companies like TwitterGoogle, and LinkedIn," Glassdoor's researchers wrote. "The three highest-paying employers in 2019 were all tech companies paying a median total salary over $160,000 a year."

In fact, every one of the top ten highest-paying companies was tech related. Second after Palo Alto Networks was NVIDIA, which has more than 50 offices worldwide and is also based in Santa Clara. The median total salary NVIDIA pays employees is $170,068. 

The list of highest-paying companies was drawn from data reported to Glassdoor between July 1, 2018, and June 30, 2019, by employees based in the US. The information reported included details on base pay and other forms of compensation, including commissions, tips, and bonuses. To be considered for the report, companies had to have received at least 75 salary reports during this timeframe. 

Though tech companies are leading the way on median pay, researchers found that the highest-paid jobs are in the field of medicine. Physicians topped Glassdoor's list of the 25 highest-paying roles in the US for 2019, earning a median base salary of $193,415.

However, Steve Durbin, managing director of the Information Security Forum, a London-based authority on cyber, information security, and risk management, thinks that doctors may lose their spot at the top to a future gatekeeper of cybersecurity.

Durbin said: "Our digital world today runs on shared data and networks, and it relies on the public trust. Security professionals are the protectors of these assets. Moving forward, organizations should rise above the hiring fray and focus on fresh, strategic, long-term approaches to building, supporting, and integrating the security workforce. 

"Security professionals are key to the future and their skill sets may very well push their profession to the top of the salary list."

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