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BC’s Cyber Talent Shortage and What To Do About It

Techouver |   | May 26, 2022

Cyber talent shortage - BC’s Cyber Talent Shortage and What To Do About ItIt is widely believed that cybercrime has already surpassed the drug trade as the single most profitable sector of illegal activities in the world.

In essence, cybersecurity is not something specific to IT and its hardware and infrastructure, but embedded in business, and government and their processes that rely on IT. If cybersecurity is foundational to business, government and education, and military, then it has thus become fundamental to society as a whole and therefore, of concern to everyone.

See:  ISED: Cyber Security and Policy Statements

It is becoming clear to the layperson, that data breaches are affecting everyone, even those who barely use the Internet, because everyone’s personal data has been digitized by one company or another, and subsequently breached.

In recent years, there has been much written about endless cybersecurity job vacancies. More recently, more has been written about how to fill those vacancies and with more urgency.

Recommendations For Employers

1. Employers need to look internally as well as externally for people that might be able to fill their vacancies. This may require more creative internally selling, i.e., “illuminate all of the internal career paths that can end up in their cybersecurity ranks”. Employers simply can’t wait forever for external candidates. The marketplace is much too competitive.

2. Employers must now shift from buying expensive security technologies to studying the enormous amounts of cyber analytical data that few are looking at and creating an action plan for. At the least, entry level junior cybersecurity analysts need to be created, to help turn prior cyber technology investments into actionable cyber plans.

Recommendations For Government

The Canadian federal government has invested over $500 million in cybersecurity nationally, and created strategic organizations like CCCS, CCTX, Serene Risc, In-SEC-M and the National Research Council’s IRAP program. More funds have been provided since the 2021 study, in the Spring 2022 federal budget, towards improved critical infrastructure and national security.

See:  Fintech Cybersecurity Best Practices

In contrast, evidence of BC’s provincial government’s action on cybersecurity has been harder to find. And the loss of prestige due to chronic underfunding or neglect in cybersecurity is exemplified by the fact that no BC postsecondary institution is included in the recently announced Cyber Security Innovation Network (CSIN), which is driven by five non-B.C. universities across Canada called the National Cybersecurity Consortium (NCC).

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