The cybersecurity industry is facing a terrifying shortage. According to data from ISC, the global deficit of digital security professionals is 2.9 million. Sadly, this shortage is growing at the worst possible time. As the shortage of security experts widens, the threats of cybercriminals are becoming more severe than ever.
The lack of cybersecurity experts is not confined to a single sector of the economy. The survey found that 63% of experts that responded to the survey said that their organization does not have enough cybersecurity professionals on staff. Around 59% of respondents said that their organization faced at least a moderate risk of suffering a cybersecurity breach, despite having insufficient resources to prevent it.
What does the lack of cybersecurity professionals mean for small and medium sized businesses?
Cyberattacks are becoming more frequent than ever. One study found that the number of new mobile malware variants increased by 54% in 2017. Another report showed that BEC attacks increased by 55% over the same time interval.
These threats are especially concerning for small businesses around the world. Small businesses need to cope with a growing number of possible attacks. Unfortunately, the severity of those attacks is not going down anytime soon. Around 60% of all small businesses that experience a cybersecurity breach are forced into bankruptcy within six months.
The global business community needs to be more diligent than ever. They must recognize the growing threats that cybercriminals pose to them. Unfortunately, it will be difficult for them to respond to these threats, considering there is a growing a shortage of digital security professionals.
What are the options for SMEs trying to deal with a crowing shortage of cybersecurity experts?
Businesses around the world are looking for solutions to stave off the impending cybersecurity crisis. The shortage of security professionals won’t be a valid excuse to their shareholders, customers or employees if their operations are forced to shut down. They must look for other solutions. Here are some options that are available to them.
Relying more heavily on SaaS security options
SaaS platforms are becoming more important than ever. Many of them are specifically designed to help thwart cyberattacks.
These platforms offer both advantages and risks to small businesses that depend on them to prevent cyberattacks. On the one hand, if they ease the burden on human cybersecurity professionals. They are able to automate many processes, which means that the companies that depend on them should be able to utilize better security with the same level of security professionals on their payroll. These tools can also help improve the effectiveness of your cybersecurity strategy. They use sophisticated threat detection algorithms to identify risks that would be overlooked by human cybersecurity experts.
However, there is a caveat to these solutions. You need to be careful to make sure that the cybersecurity experts on your team are aware of the limitations. They could become complacent and depend on the SaaS solutions to handle threats that they aren’t equipped for. Overreliance on these systems could also lead to organizations reducing their headcount of cybersecurity experts too much, which could leave them much more vulnerable to cyberattacks.
This means that you need to leverage SaaS security solutions, while also recognizing their limitations.
Training more professionals to handle cybersecurity risks needs to be a top priority. Since these skills take a long time to develop from scratch, it is best to focus on training people with an existing background in web development, programming or other IT fields. They will have a shorter learning curve after taking a cybersecurity course.
Small Businesses Must Be Resilient to Cyberattacks as a Shortage of Professionals Looms
There is a growing shortage of cybersecurity professionals around the world. SMEs need to recognize this and respond accordingly.