Cybersecurity operations have become increasingly complex and sophisticated in recent years. A recent study by security firm Proofpoint found that the average number of cyber-attacks has increased by nearly 50% in the last two years. With the increasing number of attacks, the need for cybersecurity operations has never been greater.
Unfortunately, the cybersecurity workforce isn’t keeping pace with the increasing demand. A recent study by the US Department of Homeland Security found that there’ll be a shortage of 1.8 million cybersecurity workers by 2022. The situation is even worse in the UK, where the government estimates a shortfall of 2.9 million cybersecurity workers by 2027.
The cybersecurity workers shortage is a major problem for organizations trying to protect their networks and data. Without enough qualified workers, organizations will struggle to implement effective security measures and be more likely to experience data breaches.
There are a number of steps organizations can take to mitigate the impact of the cybersecurity labor shortage. Here are some of the most important:
Automate Where Possible
One of the best ways to offset the impact of the cybersecurity labor shortage is to automate as much of the security process as possible. Automation can help speed up the security process and free up workers to focus on more complex tasks.
There are a number of different security tasks that can be automated, including vulnerability management, patch management, and incident response. By automating these tasks, organizations can reduce the time their security team spends on routine tasks and let them focus on more important tasks.
There’s no silver bullet for addressing the extreme labor shortage in cybersecurity operations, but automating as much as possible is a good start.
Use Artificial Intelligence
Another way to offset the impact of the cybersecurity labor shortage is to use artificial intelligence (AI) to help with security tasks. AI can be used to automate tasks, such as identifying and responding to security threats.
In addition, AI can help organizations better understand their data and identify patterns that could indicate a security threat. By using AI, organizations can make their security operations more efficient and effective.
In an extreme labor shortage, it may be necessary to use artificial intelligence to help run cybersecurity operations. Several AI-powered tools and services can help with various aspects of cybersecurity, from malware detection and prevention to incident response and threat intelligence.
This could involve using AI to help monitor for potential threats, help automate tasks that would normally be done manually, and help investigate and respond to incidents.
By using AI, businesses can free up human resources for other tasks or simply reduce the manpower needed to run their cybersecurity operations.
Outsource Where Possible
One of the best ways to offset the impact of the cybersecurity labor shortage is to outsource some security tasks to third-party providers. There are a number of different security tasks that can be outsourced, including vulnerability management, patch management, and incident response.
Outsourcing can help reduce the workload of the in-house security team and allow organizations to focus on more important tasks. In addition, outsourcing can help improve the quality of the security process, as third-party providers are often more experienced and have access to better resources.
This can be done by working with a managed security service provider (MSSP) or a cloud-based security solution. MSSPs can help with various tasks, including monitoring and managing your security infrastructure, incident response, and compliance. They can also provide training and support for your in-house team.
Train Your Existing Workforce
One of the best ways to offset the impact of the cybersecurity labor shortage is to train your existing workforce in cybersecurity. Many organizations have employees who are already familiar with IT and could be trained to help with the security process.
Training your existing workforce can make your security operations more efficient and effective. In addition, training your workforce can help improve employee morale and retain employees.
This may include hiring new employees and training them on the cybersecurity basics. You must also create a system where employees can share information and collaborate on projects. It’ll require some investment in time and resources but will be worth it in the long run.
Hire From Outside The Traditional Workforce
One of the best ways to offset the impact of the cybersecurity labor shortage is to hire employees from outside the traditional workforce. A number of different groups can be hired, including recent graduates, military veterans, and people with no prior experience in cybersecurity.
Hiring from outside the traditional workforce can help improve the quality of the security process, as these employees will often have fresh perspectives and will be less likely to be complacent. In addition, hiring from outside the traditional workforce can help to improve employee morale and can help to retain employees.
There are a number of ways to find these individuals and get them interested in working in cybersecurity. One way is to partner with colleges and universities to identify students interested in the field and connect them with internship or entry-level opportunities.
Another way is to work with professional organizations serving underrepresented cybersecurity groups, such as women or minorities. These organizations can provide mentorship and networking opportunities to help individuals transition into the field.
With the right approach, running a successful cybersecurity operation is possible even in an extreme labor shortage. By thinking outside the traditional workforce, you can identify and develop the talent you need to keep your operation running smoothly.
Wrapping It Up
Organizations struggling to find qualified cybersecurity workers should consider taking some of the abovementioned steps. By taking these steps, organizations can offset the impact of the cybersecurity labor shortage and can make their security operations more efficient and effective.