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Tipping point for the cyber security skills gap

While it’s long been known that the cyber security industry has a significant skills gap problem, what’s less well known is that this gap is increasing. In October 2018, (ISC)2 revealed that the global cyber skills gap now stands at three million, with 63% of businesses lacking the cyber skills needed to keep threats at bay.

In 2019, get ready for a tipping point between the resource, skills and expertise of the ‘good guys’ who are fighting attacks and the ‘bad guys’ who are launching the attacks. As cyber attackers’ tactics become ever more sophisticated and harder to spot, it will take more of the good guys’ time to identify and stop them.

An example of a new-style attack that takes more work to detect and clean up are account takeovers, where attackers steal the email credentials of employees and use them to send emails from a user’s real account. Because attackers cover their tracks, for example by deleting sent emails, often people only know they’ve been breached when they get mysterious out-of-office responses.

On top of this, many organisations are finding it harder to recruit and retain cyber specialists to keep the bad guys at bay and are having to rely on fewer people with the skills and expertise needed to protect their organisation. Decreasing human resources will come to a head in 2019, when organisations are no longer able to investigate ‘stealth’ cyberattacks.

Michael Flouton, VP, Product Ops and Security Strategy, Barracuda Networks

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