Security skills shortage leaving the UK open to attack

The increasing security skills shortage is making it easier for cyber criminals to target UK firms and individuals

Across the industry warnings are being sounded about looming skills shortages that are going to hinder the ability for firms to compete and innovate in the future.

Earlier this week EMC was stressing how a lack of big data skills was becoming a problem and making it difficult for customer to take advantage of real-time analytics.

But the problem is wider than just having enough data scientists and there are also concerns from those operating in the security market that a lack of cyber skills is leaving the door open to attackers.

According to a survey from MWR InfoSecurity three quarters of the security professionals it canvassed at the recent 44Con 2014 event felt that a lack of skilled staff was making it easier for hackers to strike.

One of the answers was for the industry to do more and there were also calls for the government to step up its commitment to improving cyber skills.

"What we have here is a case of not only a shortage in highly skilled professionals to combat cyber crime, but also a lack of general education amongst the public and employees that hackers can take advantage of to compromise our national security in Great Britain," said Martyn Ruks, group technical director at MWR InfoSecurity.

He said that plenty was already being done to try and increase skills with efforts being made in both the private and public sectors to try and make sure the situation improved.

As well as firms and educational institutions doing more to help ease the skills crisis there continues to be a need for individuals to take data security more seriously.

October happens to be cyber security awareness month and Tony Neate, CEO of Get Safe Online, said that alongside business efforts to educate employees there was also more that could be done for the general public.

“Each and every one of us has a big role to play when protecting ourselves, and the places we work, from online criminals," he said.

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