A new report shows the extent to which a shortage in cyber security skills is affecting businesses. Talent acquisition firm Stott and May spoke to cyber security leaders across the US and Europe, and found that 76% of businesses report a cyber security skills gap in their company.
The report showed a growing awareness amongst CSOs about the increasing importance of cyber security, with 54% describing it as a ‘strategic priority.’ But a lack of available talent is preventing many businesses from implementing their cyber security strategies.
Internal skills shortages are part of the problem, with 39% of the study’s participants viewing this as the biggest boundary to implementing strategy. Yet 72% also claimed that they struggled to source the required cyber security talent anywhere on the market.
Breaking the figures down by region, the report showed that the issue was most pronounced in the US, with 81% of cyber security leaders reporting a struggle to find talent. The figure in the UK was 72%, and 60% in mainland Europe.
The research also touches upon the growing challenges faced by cyber security professionals, such as the move towards cloud computing. 54% of the respondents claimed that they expect the move towards the cloud to lead to more security incidents. Within the report, Jim Rutt, CISO at Dana Foundation, warns that few businesses fully appreciate the level of threat associated with cloud and other emerging technologies. As Rutt states:
‘The biggest challenge for both security and operational leaders in IT is the perception that you can just take what you have on-premise, migrate it to the cloud and you can keep the same controls in place and everything will work out fine. CISOs need to get a lot more educated on what they truly need from a defensive posture in a cloud environment.’
Other issues highlighted in the report by Rutt include insider threat, API integration and IoT security.
The report also demonstrates some of the ways that larger firms are attempting to plug the skills gap. Upskilling internal candidates and leaning on AI and machine learning to free up existing cyber security talent has been fruitful for some medium and large enterprises. However, the findings also demonstrate that 52% of cyber security leaders show a preference for sourcing the right skills on the open market.
To access all the insights from Stott and May’s cyber security research, download the Cyber Security in Focus 2020 report here.
Infographic courtesy of www.stottandmay.com