Dan Vigdor is the co-founder of ThriveDXthe world leader in providing cybersecurity training to upskill and upskill students.
The digital transformation has revolutionized the traditional economic landscape and created a vital need for a digitally skilled workforce. As technology becomes increasingly intertwined with everyday life, cybersecurity has become more important again. The Covid-19 pandemic increased cyber attacks by 300%creating a need for more cybersecurity talent to be placed within organizations to protect their confidential data.
With such high demand, the lack of cybersecurity professionals creates potential security gaps. These gaps can cause anything from irresponsible handling of personal information to catastrophic infrastructure failures that can have life-or-death consequences.
New Opportunities in Cyber
According to Cyber security companies, there are 3.5 million unfilled cyber jobs worldwide. Digital transformation has impacted employment and changed the face of commerce. Businesses are more agile and people are accessing new opportunities through online marketplaces and start-ups. Ultimately, digital transformation is one of the biggest drivers of economic change today.
Businesses need help filling positions that require programming skills, big data analytics, and cybersecurity operations, leading to a wider gap between businesses and their growth potential. Cyberattacks exploit all the vulnerabilities that organizations have that expose assets. Cybercriminals use a variety of methods to gain access to personal information and take advantage of unsuspecting individuals. One of the main tactics used is phishing, where adversaries rely on people responding to known emails and fake websites with sensitive data. Human error is the leading cause of cybersecurity breaches.
Cybersecurity experts monitor traffic flows, identify vulnerabilities, and protect against cyberattacks that could damage their company’s reputation or disrupt operations. To remain competitive and resilient, it is essential for companies to keep abreast of the latest cybersecurity trends and to invest in skilled personnel specially trained to detect these threats.
More and more companies around the world are recognizing the importance of protecting their valuable assets from malicious attacks. There is already a global cybersecurity workforce shortage. This shortage is particularly large in the aerospace, government, education, insurance and transport sectors. A cybersecurity workforce shortage is jeopardizing the most fundamental functions of the profession, such as risk assessment, oversight and patching critical systems.
With rising salaries and a wealth of opportunities for growth, interested individuals can take advantage of this plethora of opportunities through upskilling. Cybersecurity roles can vary depending on the type of organization and specific area of focus. Some common roles are:
• Information security analyst.
• Cybersecurity advisor.
• Penetration tester.
• Security Architect.
• Network security technician.
Businesses can contribute to closing the rapidly growing digital skills gap by continuously upskilling and upskilling their workforce. As cyber threats become more creative, it is essential to keep up with skills, terminology and trends. Offering internship and mentorship programs for candidates to apply their knowledge in real-world scenarios is an essential way to put their skills to the test.
It can also be beneficial to have a knowledgeable guide share their wisdom from real-world scenarios with a less experienced person, giving them the priceless experience and resourceful coaching needed to succeed in such a lucrative industry. Finally, companies and leaders should partner with educational organizations that specialize in upskilling and reskilling programs, where they have the opportunity to attract, retain and retrain digital skills professionals, which will build a sustainable talent pipeline of cyber professionals to create.
Access to extensive training
Upskilling and reskilling offer the potential for financial success, along with job stability and an opportunity to work in an ever-evolving industry, and help secure our global data networks. There are plenty of job opportunities for those who want to explore this field and make a difference in their community. The global workforce gap has increased by more than 25% this year, with nearly 70% of organizations saying they are understaffed, according to (ISC)2.
“While the cyber-personnel shortage poses a short- and long-term threat to our national and economic security, it also presents an important opportunity to employ a more diverse and inclusive workforce in well-paid jobs that offer strong career opportunities,” said Camille Stewart Gloster, Deputy National Cyber Director, Technology and Ecosystem Security. So, how do we create a more diverse and inclusive cyber workforce? We need to make this career path more accessible, and one way to do this is to rethink recruitment barriers, such as the requirement of a standard four-year degree to be considered for open positions.
To help close this gap and maximize related employment opportunities, we need to demystify the negative connotations about the cybersecurity industry and provide accessible resources to those interested, such as training programs to upskill and retrain lifelong learners and career changers. We also need to ensure that cyber training, education and career paths are available to everyone in our society with the passion and potential to do the job.
Another big action we need to take as a society is access to the right education. Diversity is needed in the industry for a more innovative, creative and holistic cybersecurity ecosystem and to help reduce bias and identify blind spots in the threat landscape. A resilient system of the digital economy would also need an inclusive cybersecurity workforce. According to a McKinsey surveyit is estimated that by 2025, cyber-attacks will cost the world more than $10 trillion.
In short, companies need to expand their talent search, offer upskilling and reskilling programs and launch mentorship programs to create accessibility in the cyber industry and do their part in solving the cyber workforce shortage. Closing the digital skills gap is not a one-person task, but rather a collective effort rooted in collaboration.