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The Rising Need for Cybersecurity Specialists in Today’s Tech Age

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By Arjun Mohan, CEO-India, upGrad

As per the Data Breach Investigations Report, Ransomware attacks continued to grow the fifth consecutive year in 2021. In recent years, many high-profile and sophisticated data breaches across sectors like Finance, Aviation, Healthcare and Pharmaceutical, among others have been increasing, consistently despite global measures. Millions of consumers’ confidential information, including usernames, passcodes, and credit card numbers were made public, by high level security breaches at some of the world’s largest corporations. And the magnitude of such attacks is increasing, as per the findings of a new study by Positive Technologies, which states that external attackers can breach the organisational network perimeter and access the local network resources in 93% cyberattack cases, thereby impacting the very operations and revenues of the firm, while gaining access to employee details, and increasing privacy violations.

The reluctance of most firms to tolerate unauthorized access to their data is one factor contributing to the growth of the cybersecurity industry. IBM estimates that the average cost to enterprises experiencing a data breach is $3.62 million. This is a figure that has the potential to put a lot of firms out of business. Therefore, even the world’s largest corporations prioritise security more than anything else, as it has a direct impact on the revenue. Furthermore, remote working and widespread digitisation has led to the expansion of virtual avenues, thereby increasing the likelihood of cyberattacks. Coupled with inaction, delays and lack of preparedness in the technical and infrastructural implementation, is increasing organisational vulnerability. But, to address these challenges one must understand that in the world of cybersecurity, the concern is not the “if” but the “when”.  Therefore, in our ever-growing virtual environments, it is critical to have skilled cybersecurity professionals, who can anticipate probable cyberthreats, before the actual attack.

The Imminent Need for Cybersecurity Professionals

They are the internet’s unsung heroes, and they deserve the credit. A cybersecurity specialist’s job is to identify and address flaws in systems and data before it is exploited. Priority number one for a cybersecurity professional should be preventing attacks by identifying and correcting potential security flaws before malevolent individuals may exploit them. They enact the mixed role of a construction manager, doorman, a detective, and an undercover cop. Businesses, large and small, are always on the lookout for qualified cybersecurity professionals to enhance their digital infrastructure and protect their data from unwanted attacks.

Cybersecurity Jobs to Grow About 31% By 2029, Making It an Excellent Career Opportunity

Due to the growing instances of cyber-attacks, the demand for individuals with cybersecurity skills, it is an excellent field to pursue at the moment. The U.S. Bureau of Labour Statistics projects a 31% impact on employment rates of cybersecurity professionals by 2029. Comparatively, the average growth rate for all sectors is merely 4%. Whether it’s healthcare, banking, entertainment, or retail, all businesses confront cybersecurity concerns. This demand for data security specialists is anticipated to expand by 33% between the years 2020 and 2030, which is much faster than the average growth rate for all occupations. Therefore, organisations are eager to hire skilled specialists.

The most straightforward approach to improving cybersecurity expertise is formalized and advanced education, which many organizations increasingly require. Therefore, to transition into roles like Cyber Security Expert, Cyber Security Engineer, Cybersecurity Analyst, Application Security Engineer, Network Security Engineer, one needs to acquire skills like Application Security, Data Secrecy, Cryptography and Network Security. For learners seeking to transition into Cybersecurity from IT or Tech domains, the best way forward would be to opt for flexible online courses that offer extensive theoretical and application-based learning from leading global universities like Caltech or Purdue. Edtech platforms that offer programs taught by industry experts, while offering global peer-to-peer networking, are critical to drive up-skilling in the cybersecurity discipline.

With a CAGR of 13.4%, the worldwide cyber security market is expected to rise from $155.83 billion in 2022 to $376.32 billion in 2029. There has been an extraordinary and astonishing increase in demand for security solutions because of the global Covid-19 outbreak, compared to levels seen before the pandemic. With virtual sensors embedded in our physical world, the need for protecting ones’ privacy and information is crucial to avoid financial risks. Therefore, as we move towards the next phase of innovation and digital diversity, it is imperative to create a talent pool of skilled Cybersecurity professionals who can secure our virtual environments, and safeguard our privacy and well-being.

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