Digital technologies drive economic growth yet create new cyber risks requiring ever more sophisticated solutions. There is worldwide demand for new and innovative approaches to tackle global cyber-threats specific to large-scale infrastructures, from energy production to finance through to healthcare and smart transportation. The cyber security of such infrastructures is paramount - their disruption can have large-scale impacts on society as well as massive business losses. There is a major shortage of cyber security professionals globally, and the specialist nature of critical infrastructures makes the problem even more acute.

A strong ethos of rigorous experimental and empirical cyber security research underpins the MSc, facilitated by a state-of-the-art testbed for studying critical national infrastructure (CNI) and Internet of Things (IoT) security, and bespoke teaching equipment. You'll learn to apply foundational cyber security techniques to infrastructure and will develop the skills for engineering scalable solutions. You'll be exposed to real-world problems that are practical and challenge-oriented, but underpinned by rigorous research.

This MSc aims to:

  • Enable a deep understanding of fundamental concepts, design principles, building blocks and methods to understand and mitigate against cyber security threats;
  • Give you hands-on experience of working with devices, systems and networks utilised in realistic infrastructure environments;
  • Equip you with the ability to apply security principles and technical knowledge to analyse complex real-world infrastructures systems (including software systems, networks, control systems and IoT) to identify potential security issues and solutions;
  • Provide you with the skills to reason critically about complex problems that require evaluation and analysis from a multi-dimensional perspective including technical, human and organisational aspects.

Programme structure

The MSc consists of the following compulsory units:

  • Foundations (20 credits)
  • Network Security (20 credits)
  • Fundamentals of System Security (20 credits)
  • Security of Industrial Control Systems (30 credits)
  • IoT and IIoT Security (30 credits).

To complete your studies you will undertake a 60-credit individual research project proposed by project supervisors. This unit will provide you with first-hand experience in planning, running, documenting, and presenting a substantial piece of original work in the field of cyber security of infrastructures. This will typically include reading and synthesising academic literature, developing a hypothesis and validating it through hands-on experimental or implementation work. The projects offered each year will vary and each will have a different focus under the overarching umbrella of Infrastructures Security.

The units are taught in intensive week-long blocks. Part-time study will require day time attendance on campus for the full week when a unit is being taught.

Visit our programme catalogue for full details of the structure and unit content for our MSc Cyber Security (Infrastructures Security).

Entry requirements

An upper second-class honours degree or international equivalent in engineering preferably computer science, electrical or electronic engineering or a related subject. Other disciplines will be considered on a case-by-case basis.

Applicants must demonstrate academic experience in programming with a minimum of two modules at 60%, or international equivalent. This can be through one module in the first year and a minimum second module in year two or onwards.

We will consider applicants whose grades are slightly lower than the programme's entry requirements, if they have at least one of the following:

  • evidence of significant, relevant work experience;
  • a relevant postgraduate qualification.

If this is the case, applicants should include their CV (curriculum vitae / résumé) when they apply, showing details of their relevant work experience and/or qualifications.

See international equivalent qualifications on the International Office website.

Read the programme admissions statement for important information on entry requirements, the application process and supporting documents required.

Go to admissions statement

If English is not your first language, you will need to reach the requirements outlined in our profile level D.

Further information about English language requirements and profile levels.

Fees and funding

UK: full-time
£17,700 per year
UK: part-time (two years)
£8,850 per year
UK: part-time (three years)
£5,900 per year
Overseas: full-time
£34,200 per year

Fees are subject to an annual review. For programmes that last longer than one year, please budget for up to an 8% increase in fees each year.

More about tuition fees, living costs and financial support.

Alumni discount

University of Bristol students and graduates can benefit from a 25% reduction in tuition fees for postgraduate study. Check your eligibility for an alumni discount.

Funding for 2024/25

Further information on funding for prospective UK and international postgraduate students.

Career prospects

This programme is informed by the skills gap identified by industry. Following graduation from this MSc, students will have the opportunity to play a fundamental role in delivering cyber security on a large-scale through their careers. Graduates may find roles in network security, Industrial Control Systems Security and Operational Technology, will be capable of critically evaluating and synthesising research literature, developing and deploying systems, and communicating with others in their field and other disciplines. Top graduates from this degree will be able to proactively advance the development of infrastructures security or move onto doctoral studies in cyber security.