Cybersecurity Will Have 1.8 Million Unfilled Jobs by 2022

- June 9, 2017

A report released from the Center for Cyber Safety and Education shows a 20 percent increase in the workforce gap since 2015.

Surveyed professionals in North America state the main reason for the gap is a lack of qualified professionals, which accounts for 68 percent of respondents.

The report, in its eighth edition, surveyed more than 19,000 cybersecurity professionals in 170 countries, and the results show clearer what the industry has been saying for quite some time: there are not enough qualified security professionals to fill the open positions.

“There is a definite concern that jobs remain unfilled, ultimately resulting in a lack of resources to face current industry threats – of the information security workers surveyed, 66 percent reported having too few of workers to address current threats,” said David Shearer, CEO of (ISC)2.

Shearer’s concern is supported by an earlier report from the Informational Systems Audit and Control Association (ISACA) that found not only do open positions take 30 to 60 days to fill, no only do a third of companies have positions open that go unfilled permanently, half—or sometimes more than half—of the candidates applying are unqualified.

Among the various reasons for the worker shortage cited in the (ISC)2 report, most respondents in the survey report a lack qualified personnel.

But despite the current shortage, there is good news in that nearly every respondent in a hiring manager role stated they would be increasing their workforce, with many organizations in every region of the world increasing by more than 20 percent.

In particular, 30 percent of companies in education and health care are looking to increase their security workforce by more than 20 percent.

In terms of specific talent needed, the most sought after roles are in operations and security management [62 percent], followed by incident and threat management and forensics [58 percent].

Perhaps one area to make up some of the workforce shortage would be to encourage more women to enter the field. The report reiterates what has long been understood in the IT and security fields, that men make up more than 90 percent of the workforce.

To read more, see the North American version of the (ISC)2 report here.