Cybersecurity skills shortage impact on technology innovation


The global cybersecurity skills shortage continues to be a critical issue. For example, ESG research found 45% of organizations report a “problematic shortage” of cybersecurity skills today, more than any other area within IT.

Want more? Here are a few tidbits from last year’s research project done in conjunction with the Information Systems Security Association (ISSA). In a survey of 437 cybersecurity professionals and ISSA members:

  • 29% of cybersecurity professionals said the global cybersecurity skills shortage has had a significant impact on their organization. Another 40% said the global cybersecurity skills shortage has impacted their organization “somewhat.”
  • When asked to identify the impact of the cybersecurity skills shortage:
    • 54% said it increased the cybersecurity staff’s workload
    • 35% said their organization had to hire and train junior staff rather than hire people with the appropriate level of experience necessary
    • 35% said the cybersecurity skills shortage has created a situation whereby the infosec team hasn’t had time to learn or use its security technologies to their full potential

While the cybersecurity skills shortage endures, the industry itself remains white hot. According to a recent Bloomberg business article, the cybersecurity industry is expected to grow about 7% a year through 2019 to reach $46 billion in valuation.

Coincidence? I think not. Cybersecurity is a people-intensive, highly skilled discipline, so it’s safe to assume the lack of qualified professionals, as well as the overwhelming workload of employed cybersecurity folks, is a root cause of the perpetual wave of security events and data breaches. Likewise, these security incidents are driving financial growth and opportunities in the cybersecurity industry.

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