Security researcher question, work up to the position with my current degree or go for a PhD?

Hello, Sorry if this is the wrong place to post this but I have come to a bit of a cross roads

Tl;dr will a PhD help me to become a security researcher (after some time working in the field or right off the bat) or would it be better to come into the role after having years of experience working in the field ?

My end goal is to become a security researcher.

I have been offered two options, On one hand I have a support role in an organisation with the chance to move into network security after a couple of years where I will be making decent money along the way. I am currently teaching myself penetration testing and coding in python and JS as it interests me and my current degree is in networking.

My other choice is to go for a PhD where the topic is in the security field. The supervisor I have spoken to is on board with my initial thesis idea and I would have the chance to be published in multiple research papers in the area along the way. Plus the bonus of having a doctorate.

I am unsure of what to do at this stage as both options have similar strong and weak points and I am more than happy doing both.

The reason I am asking is to try and get some opinions of people in the field as to the preferable path that employers see and for some other opinions on the matter than those I have already sought out from people not in the security field

Touch here for the full post on Network Security Noblemen tumblr

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