Three quarters of CIOs blame skills shortages for security woes

A report has revealed managers are expecting increases in security threats over the next five years

Senior IT managers have revealed they are concerned the security skills shortages will lead to an increase in security threats over the next five years.

More than three quarters of CIOs questioned by Robert Half Technology said they are concerned their organisation's security is being put at risk because their employees do not hold the required skills to combat cyber-threats.

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As a result, 34 per cent of respondents said they were looking at increasing headcounts over the coming years to combat the risks of cyber attacks.

"There is no doubt that highly specialised skills are vital," Neil Owen, director of Robert Half Technology said.

"But the ability to clearly articulate cyber security issues in a language that senior management and non-IT employees understand will not only increase security awareness but also enhance the reputation of the IT department as business partners who add value across the business."

Sixty per cent of respondents of Robert Half Technology's research said they are most worried about data abuse and data integrity, while 54 per cent said they are worried about cybercrime as a whole. 39 per cent explained they thought spying, spyware and ransomware is the biggest security risk in their organisation.

The most in demand skills are cloud security according to 51 per cent of CIOs, IT security technologies (47%) and data analytics (37%), while cloud security, IT security technologies and security architecture are the hardest positions to fill, resulting in a substantial deficit.

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"The prominence of cyber breaches has lifted the demand for cyber security experts as cyber risk becomes a company-wide point of discussion, Owen continued.

"An insufficient number of new specialists entering the IT market has forced organisations to consider effective retention programmes, training existing staff, partnering with educational institutions and developing flexible hiring policies that include both permanent and contract specialists.

"A dynamic IT strategy that brings together the right fit of technology and people is the cornerstone for companies protecting their future."

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