Countering cyber attacks and preserving the availability and integrity of key systems has become an incredibly complex challenge as the sophistication of attackers has grown rapidly in recent years.
This coupled with more and more powerful technology and the interdependence of systems has increased threats and the potential impact of attacks exponentially. There has been a major transformation in the role of cyber security professionals and a sharp rise in the need for a larger and more dynamic cyber security workforce. Cyber security is now a prominent, highly regarded profession offering many varied career paths which together underpin the social, political and financial fabric of modern society.
Whilst the need for a bright, dedicated, and quick-thinking cyber security workforce is growing, the number of skilled candidates is not. Recent statistics from Microsoft suggest that the IT industry will create 78,000 jobs in the UK in the next four years but research from the government body e-Skills confirms a 50% decline in young UK residents entering IT careers during the last five.
This is a trend we need to reverse and ensure that amongst new recruits there are sufficient equipped with the increasingly diverse range of cyber skills business and government needs.
Supporting a new digital age requires a more secure approach to information management and an increasingly high calibre, dedicated, professional cyber workforce. We need to demonstrate the value of getting involved, and provide young people with positive channels for their talents and a formal route to becoming a recognised and respected information security professional. Cyber Security Challenge UK has been set up to address this.
Sans Institute, a founder sponsor of Cyber Security Challenge UK, funded an industry survey which demonstrates the requirement for cyber security professionals. You can view the results of this survey.