Developing the next generation of cyber talent

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Urgent call for cyber security skills gap to be addressed

In the two years since the formation of the National Cyber Security Strategy (NCSS) there has been a significant increase in the threat of cyber-attacks from hostile nation states and cyber criminals. Despite this, studies consistently report that the skills gap in the Cyber Security sector is growing. In fact, the NCSS reports that more than half of all businesses and charities (54%) have a basic technical cyber security skills gap, falling to 18% in public sector organisations.

With this in mind, Cyber Security Connect UK (CSCUK), the leading conference and industry forum for CISOs, is calling for government and the industry to work together to tackle what is fast becoming a potential crisis situation.

Jim Griffiths, head of information security at Kier Group and member of CSCUK’s steering committee, comments: “The threat from cyber-attacks is on the rise, already costing British business billions each year. While this is the case, our readiness to deal with such situations depletes only further as the gap between our requirements and the pool of talented people available to fulfill roles such as that of the CISO grows larger.

“The challenge we face is not a simple one, we not only need to attract more people to our industry, but we also need to attract a rich and diverse skillset, able to deal with the various requirements of cyber security in all sectors. This is a skill set which will need to evolve quickly too, as technology advances and the talents of cyber criminals develop also."

“While significant steps have been taken to begin tackling this issue, it’s clear more needs to be done, and quickly. In order for more significant progress to be made, industry must work collaboratively with government to attract talent to the industry, retain said talent and educate and nurture it so those we do have in place can operate effectively and efficiently. Only by working together can we address the skills hortage quickly enough that the UK stays resilient and mitigates the increased risk of cyber-attacks.”

During CSCUK 2019 there will be a discussion covering the subject of developing the next generation of cyber talent with leading figures from the cyber security industry.