MSc Cyber Security

Become a digital crime fighter.

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Overview

Networked computers run our world. From homes to hospitals, airports to banks and all stops in between, everything is connected – but these systems are susceptible to infiltration and attack. Study our MSc Cyber Security and you’ll gain the expertise to become part of the defence.

By learning to design, implement and manage computer-based systems security, you’ll develop the skills and confidence to succeed in a wide range of cyber-security roles, including security designer, ethical hacker, and digital forensics officer.

Starting with the fundamentals, you’ll gain a broad understanding of the different levels of computer and network security. As you progress, you’ll explore both the technical aspects and the logistics of planning and implementing network security management. You’ll also learn how to investigate systems after a breach.

Throughout, you’ll be supported by highly professional staff with practical experience at the forefront of this dynamic landscape. And working in our specialist labs with the latest hardware and software will give you hands-on project experience in real-world network security scenarios.

The result? You’ll become a specialist in a field with opportunities in virtually every sector – with everything that means for your future career prospects.

Non means-tested loans of up to a maximum of £10,000 will be available to postgraduate masters students - click here to find out more information

Features and Benefits

Accreditations, Awards and Endorsements

Career Prospects

The advanced skills and understanding you’ll develop on our MSc course can take you into cyber security roles across a range of industries, in both the public and private sectors. You could apply for jobs like information security specialist, software engineer for information security, ethical hacker, security designer or security tester, to name a few.

Your masters could also provide a foundation for further studies – going on to do a PhD –whether staying on at Manchester Met or going elsewhere.

You’ll have the specialist support of our careers service from day one, and for three years after you leave us. Between the services available through the School of Computing, Mathematics and Digital Technology and the University’s Career Service, you’ll have access to everything from employer events and careers fair to employability skills workshops and dedicated advisors. 

Professional Accreditation

The School is an educational affiliate of the British Computing Society – the Chartered Institute for IT in the UK (BCS), a member of the Oracle Academy and an Academy for the Computer Technology Industry Association (CompTIA). Many of the School’s degree programmes are accredited by BCS.

The School is also an academic partner of the Institute of Information Security Professionals who recognise our expertise in the field of information and cyber security. Mathematics degree courses are approved by the Institute of Mathematics and its Applications.

Learn more about graduate careers

Entry requirements

You’ll need a good UK honours degree – at least a 2:2 – or the international equivalent, in a computing-related subject with knowledge of programming and networks. We might also consider your application if you a have a different kind of computing qualification, together with substantial experience in a computing-focused role.

International students please see mmu.ac.uk/international

Overseas applicants will require IELTS with an overall score of 6.5 with no less than 5.5 in any category, or an equivalent accepted English qualification. Accepted English qualifications can be viewed here.

Course details

You’ll study five core units, covering areas like Advanced Network Security, Cryptography and Encryption, and Computer Forensics and Security. You’ll then move on to tackle an in-depth masters project.

Read a graduate profile: Meet David, Yvonne and Karen.

Our research in Informatics

Manchester Metropolitan University's School of Computing, Mathematics and Digital Technology is home to the Informatics Research Centre (IRC), an interdisciplinary hub that conducts leading work on fundamental and applied computer science. Areas of research include intelligent systems, image and sensory computation, logic, peer-to-peer computing, computation, novel and natural computing, informatics and computational fluid dynamics. Research in the School was rated ‘internationally excellent’ with some rated ‘world-leading’ in the 2014 Research Excellence Framework.

The Centre is characterised by its distinctive mix of expertise, research strengths and cross-discipline working. Its over-arching aim is to use computer science to address societal challenges and ensure research has significant impact in areas such as healthcare, future cities and security.

This course can be taught full-time over 1 year, or part-time 2 years. If taught full-time all units will be taken within 1 year.

Core

  • Introduction to Computer Forensics and Security
  • Advanced Network Security
  • Cryptography and Encryption
  • Advanced Computer Networks and Operating Systems
  • Masters Project

Click below for detailed unit information.

Read more about this year of study

Core Units

Introduction to Computer Forensics and Security

This unit will introduce both computer security and digital forensics concepts.

Advanced Network Security

The aim of this unit is to provide student with the necessary skills to design and implement advanced security mechanism in a network environment. It will look in depth in relation to wired and wireless network security and the best practice in the field.

Cryptography and Encryption

The unit covers theoretical discussion of the key encryption algorithms: Diffie-Hellman, RSA, Digital Signatures, modern symmetric cryptosystems DES and AES. Additionally we will code the algorithms and their variants in a modern programming language and implement cryptosystems over a computer network.

Classical Cryptography; Shannons Theory; Block Ciphers; Hash Functions; RSA Algorithm and variants; Discrete and Public-Key Algorithms; Signatures; Pseudo-random number generators; Identification Schemes and Entity Authentication; Key Distribution; Key Agreement Schemes.

Advanced Computer Networks and Operating Systems

The unit covers advanced topics in computer networks and operating systems. It focuses on principles, architectures, and protocols used in modern large scale networked systems. Topics include:

  • Wide area networks - Compare the characteristics of WAN technologies, including their switching type, throughput, media, security, and reliability; Describe several WAN transmission and connection methods.
  • Virtual networking and remote access - Explain virtualization and identify characteristics of virtual components; Understand VPNs (virtual private networks) and the protocols they rely on; Identify the features and benefits of cloud computing and NaaS (network as a service).
  • Wireless and mobile networking - Wireless links and network characteristics; WiFi: 802.11 Wireless LANs; Cellular internet access; IoT, Sensor networks.
  • Network Management - The Infrastructure for Network Management; The Internet-Standard Management Framework; Quality of Service; Performance and Planning.
  • Classic Operating Systems - Comparing the features and trade-offs of classic operating systems;
  • Virtual Machines - Exploring the need for virtual machines and the means of their implementation;
  • File Systems - Looking at strengths and weaknesses of different approaches to persistent storage;
  • Distributed and Scalable Systems - Focusing on issues related to cloud computing and grid computing;
  • Concurrency, Scheduling & Sharing - Timing and scheduling, particularly in distributed systems;
  • Fault Tolerance - Looking at managing failure in distributed systems.
Masters Project

This unit will involve practical system creation or experimentation work in an area of computing other than digital media. The curriculum is specific to the project you choose but it will include seminars on skills and techniques required for successful design and implementation of research resources, time management, research presentation (oral, written, posters) and professional, legal and ethical issues in computing. Examination of a case study or project in an area appropriate to your intended dissertation work. Where appropriate, the implementation or experimentation may be work-based.

Assessment weightings and contact hours

10 credits equates to 100 hours of study, which is a combination of lectures, seminars and practical sessions, and independent study. A Masters qualification typically comprises of 180 credits, a PGDip 120 credits, a PGCert 60 credits and an MFA 300 credits. The exact composition of your study time and assessments for the course will vary according to your option choices and style of learning, but it could be:

Study
Assessment

Additional information about this course

Students are expected to behave in a professional and business like manner when on placement or conducting projects with external partners.

Placements options

This MSc course is a short, intensive programme, which doesn’t leave much room for a placement. But there are employers who might offer short-term internship opportunities. With our regular ‘meet the employer’ events, together with the support of our careers team, we’ll be there to help you make the most of any available opportunities. 

School of Computing, Mathematics and Digital Technology

Our School of Computing, Mathematics and Digital Technology is a vibrant community of staff and students, which prides itself on internal and external collaboration.

The department is committed to teaching and research that addresses societal challenges through disciplines like artificial intelligence, big data, computational fluid dynamics, cyber security, dynamical systems, the internet of things, smart cities, robotics and virtual reality.

More about the department

Taught by experts

Your studies are supported by a team of committed and enthusiastic teachers and researchers, experts in their chosen field. We also work with external professionals, many of whom are Manchester Met alumni, to enhance your learning and appreciation of the wider subject.

Meet our expert staff

Fees

UK and EU students

UK and EU students: Full-time fee: £8,500 per year. Tuition fees will remain the same for each year of your course providing you complete it in the normal timeframe (no repeat years or breaks in study).

UK and EU students: Part-time fee: £2,834 studied per year. Tuition fees will remain the same for each year of your course providing you complete it in the normal timeframe (no repeat years or breaks in study).

Non-EU and Channel Island students

Non-EU international and Channel Island students: Full-time fee: £15,500 per year. Tuition fees will remain the same for each year of your course providing you complete it in the normal timeframe (no repeat years or breaks in study).

Non-EU international and Channel Island students: Part-time fee: £5,167 studied per year. Tuition fees will remain the same for each year of your course providing you complete it in the normal timeframe (no repeat years or breaks in study).

Additional Information

A Masters qualification typically comprises 180 credits, a PGDip 120 credits, a PGCert 60 credits, and an MFA 300 credits. Tuition fees will remain the same for each year of study provided the course is completed in the normal timeframe (no repeat years or breaks in study).

Additional costs

Specialist Costs

All of the books required for the course are available from the library. The University also has PC labs and a laptop loan service. However, many students choose to buy some of the core textbooks for the course and/or a laptop. Students may also need to print their assignments and other documents. Campus printing costs start from 5p per page. Estimated costs are £300 for a laptop up to £100 for books and printing. Total optional cost: £400

Placement Costs

0

Professional Costs

Students can choose to join the BCS at any point in their study. It is not required but is useful. The annual charge is identified for every year there is also an option to take course membership for £57

Other Costs

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Postgraduate Loan Scheme

Up to £10,609 available to students who live in England

Find out more

Alumni Loyalty Discount

Rewarding our graduates

Learn more

Want to know more?

How to apply

The quickest and most efficient way to apply for this course is to apply online. This way, you can also track your application at each stage of the process.

Apply online now

If you are unable to apply online, you can apply for postgraduate taught courses by completing the postgraduate application form. There are exceptions for some professional courses – the course information on our on-line prospectus will give you more information in these cases.

Please note: to apply for this course, you only need to provide one reference.

You can review our current Terms and Conditions before you make your application. If you are successful with your application, we will send you up to date information alongside your offer letter.

MANCHESTER IS YOUR CITY. BE PART OF IT.

Programme Review
Our programmes undergo an annual review and major review (normally at 6 year intervals) to ensure an up-to-date curriculum supported by the latest online learning technology. For further information on when we may make changes to our programmes, please see the changes section of our Terms and Conditions.

Important Notice
This online prospectus provides an overview of our programmes of study and the University. We regularly update our online prospectus so that our published course information is accurate. Please check back to the online prospectus before making an application to us to access the most up to date information for your chosen course of study.

Confirmation of Regulator
The Manchester Metropolitan University is regulated by the Office for Students (OfS). The OfS is the independent regulator of higher education in England. More information on the role of the OfS and its regulatory framework can be found at officeforstudents.org.uk.

All higher education providers registered with the OfS must have a student protection plan in place. The student protection plan sets out what students can expect to happen should a course, campus, or institution close. Access our current Student Protection Plan.

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