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A 30% demand-supply gap projects major cybersecurity skill challenge

TeamLease Digital, has launched its latest research study titled “Cybersecurity: Securing India’s Digital Frontier”. The research study sheds light on the rapid growth and potential of the cybersecurity market in India, also addressing the mounting cyber risks faced by organizations spanning diverse sectors.

According to the research study, the cybersecurity market share is projected to reach $3.5 billion, with a projected compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 8.05 per cent by 2027. As of May 2023, the industry had approximately 40,000 open opportunities, indicating the growing demand for skilled cybersecurity professionals. However, the demand-supply gap stood at 30 per cent, projecting a major skill challenge in the industry. The research study also reveals that global weekly cyber-attacks have increased by 7 per cent to surpass 1,200 attacks per week, while Indian organizations experienced over 2,000 weekly attacks in Q1 2023, marking an 18 per cent increase compared to the previous year. The healthcare industry was a prime target, with 7.7% of attacks directed towards it.

Sharing his views, Mr Sunil Chemmankotil, Chief Executive Officer, TeamLease Digital, said “As India Inc. embraces digital infrastructures, the heightened vulnerability to cyber threats necessitates proactive measures. The prevalence of malware attacks, social engineering tactics, and other sophisticated cyber threats demands a comprehensive approach to safeguarding our digital frontiers. By staying vigilant and resilient against emerging challenges such as AI-based attacks, IoT vulnerabilities, and metaverse cyber threats, we can fortify our digital landscape and pave the way for a secure and prosperous digital transformation. There were 40,000 jobs available as of May 2023, but the skill gap remains. There is an urgent need for upskilling the workforce and hiring qualified professionals.”

To effectively combat evolving cyber threats, the research study emphasizes the importance of upskilling the workforce with a broader range of cybersecurity skills. Specializations in areas such as data privacy, cloud security, AI security, and network security are in high demand. Soft skills such as problem-solving, communication, teamwork, and collaboration are also essential in this field. The top job roles identified in the research study includes IT auditor, Information Security analyst, Network/IT Security Engineer/Specialist, Security Testing/Penetration Tester, and Computer Forensics analyst, with a base pay ranging from 3 to 6 lakhs for 0-3 years of experience. Moreover, senior and mid-level professionals with over 12 years of experience have the potential to earn an annual salary within the range of 50-80 Lakhs.

“Amidst the growing demand for cybersecurity expertise, organizations are recognizing the critical importance of upskilling and investing in training programs. Upskilling in domains like Networking & System Administration, Cloud Security, Blockchain Security, Ethical Hacking and other key skills are in high demand. As the industry faces a 30% skill gap in cybersecurity professionals, it becomes imperative for businesses to proactively strengthen their security systems through targeted training initiatives. By empowering professionals with the necessary skills, we can bridge the talent gap and bolster the resilience of our cybersecurity defences”, added Ms Krishna Vij, Business Head – IT Staffing, TeamLease Digital.

According to industry reports, few critical sectors saw major impact from cyber-attacks:

  • Healthcare: India ranks 11th in list of countries where healthcare sector is vulnerable to cyber-attacks. It witnessed 1.9 mn cyber-attacks in 2022. Average data breach cost in 2022 was 176 mn.
  • Manufacturing: Ransomware accounted for 23 per cent of cyber-attacks on manufacturing companies
  • Government: India’s share in total cyber-attacks on govt. agencies increased to 13.7 per cent in 2022 from 6.3 per cent in 2021
  • Financial Services: Indian banks reported 248 successful data breaches; 41 cases involved public sector banks, 205 were private sector banks, and two involved overseas banks
  • Retail: 77% of retail organizations were hit by ransomware in 2021, up from 44 per cent n 2020, the highest of all sectors and significantly more than the global average of 37%. The ransomware recovery cost in retail sector is $1.97mn which is above the global average $1.85 m.

The research study reveals that the rapid expansion in digital transformation has increased its vulnerability to cyber attacks such as data theft and financial losses stemming from various use cases. used cases. Furthermore, it addresses the challenges faced by India Inc due to lack of skilled professionals in this field. It also emphasises that India possesses the capability to take a leading role in developing state-of-the-art cybersecurity solutions by leveraging its robust and proficient workforce. BW People

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