The Committee on National Security Systems (CNSS) defines IA as "Measures that protect and defend information and information systems by ensuring their availability, integrity, authentication, confidentiality, and nonrepudiation. These measures include providing for restoration of information systems by incorporating protection, detection, and reaction capabilities."
Information assurance (IA) is an interdisciplinary concentration combining specialized aspects of information systems and accounting. Information Assurance includes many areas of management beyond computer security including auditing, forensic accounting, organizational design, and policy and planning. As such, an MBA program is a natural "home" for an IA concentration.
Students can pursue IA as a stand-alone concentration or combine it with an Accounting or MIS concentration. Because of overlapping course requirements, students pursuing an Accounting or MIS concentration can typically complete a second concentration in IA with two or three additional courses. Students intending to pursue a dual concentration need to plan their studies in advance and coordinate the plan with both concentration advisors.
Demand for information assurance skills is strong due to the need of organizations to secure their information systems and data. The Sarbanes-Oxley Act and related changes in accounting and auditing standards have also created many new IA employment opportunities. There is a strong local and national demand for IA skills in public and private sector MIS departments and in the audit staffs of public accounting firms and private organizations. Sandia National Laboratories has many positions that require IA skills.
Programs at the Anderson School and Graduate School of Management are designed to meet the need for top-quality management education among public, private and not-for-profit businesses.
For more information about updated courses and programs:
As part of the IA program at UNM, some great opportunities have been made available to our students to gain experience in the field of information assurance. The following is a list of current opportunities: