Critical security skills gap threatens UK infrastructure


Critical security skills gap threatens UK infrastructure

Jenny Williams

The information security industry has a critical shortage of employees, which could threaten the UK's infrastructure, an industry expert has warned.

Kevin Streater, executive director of IT and telecoms at the Open University (OU) believes there are a large number of high-paid security vacancies in the IT jobs market but no suitable candidates to fill them.

Kevin Streater, who is also chair of the Cyber Security Challenge Talent Management committee, said: "The importance of IT to the UK's infrastructure has been underestimated."

"We need security professionals to protect the UK's global internet connection. For example, if a UK bank's infrastructure goes down, there will be huge damage to the UK economy," he said.

"Only a small number of people are addressing the skills needed," he added, saying the IT industry needs to work out how to develop graduates' skills to address the security skills gap.

A recent report by the OU shows that, despite increased demand for IT staff in the past year, IT graduate candidates with technical know-how lack the necessary business skills.

Streater believes businesses must engage with higher education institutions to address the skills gap.

According to a study by analyst Frost & Sullivan, there is a gap in security skills needed to protect organisations. The 2011 (ISC)2 Global Information Security Workforce Study (GISWS) showed the profession as a whole appears to be resistant to adapting to new trends in technology, such as social media and cloud computing.

Email Alerts

Register now to receive IT-related news, guides and more, delivered to your inbox.
By submitting your personal information, you agree to receive emails regarding relevant products and special offers from TechTarget and its partners. You also agree that your personal information may be transferred and processed in the United States, and that you have read and agree to the Terms of Use and the Privacy Policy.

COMMENTS powered by Disqus  //  Commenting policy