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Cybersecurity – Big Challenge, Great Opportunity | #cybercrime | #computerhacker

By Dr. Pintu Shah

Royal Mail, T-Mobile, MGM Resorts International, 23andMe and Okta. What is common between these organisations? All of them and many others experienced cyber-attacks and data breaches in 2023.

Cybercrimes have emerged as a significant threat to the world of late. The cost of cybercrime is increasing globally. According to Cybersecurity Ventures, the estimated losses due to cybercrime are around $8 trillion in 2023 and are expected to reach $10.5 trillion annually by 2025. According to the World Economic Forum (WEF), cybercrime is the world’s third-largest economy after the United States of America and China. Can we do something to prevent such losses? Thankfully, the answer is yes. We must try at all levels, i.e., the government, organisations and individuals. Governments must develop national cybersecurity strategies and appropriate cyber laws and regulations. They need to promote the cybersecurity ecosystem in the country. Organisations must treat cyber risk as business risk and invest appropriately in cybersecurity technologies and human resources. The individuals need to follow cyber hygiene.

This cyber challenge offers an excellent opportunity for students to build a cybersecurity career. As per a report from the ISC2 workforce study, the global requirement for cybersecurity professionals is around 4 million, with approximately 2.7 million requirements in Asia and the Pacific region. In the last couple of years, the jobs in this domain have grown three times faster than other IT roles. WEF report indicates that the workforce-skills gap is more pronounced in cybersecurity than anywhere else.

‘If a college student asked me what career would most assure 50 years of steady, well-paying employment, I would say cybersecurity. The growth is steep, the need will be sustained, and this need currently comes up against a major talent shortage’ – Alec Ross, author of The Industries of the Future.

Here is a list of four reasons to consider a career in cybersecurity

  1. Cybersecurity Degree: Job Security: With increasing cyber incident frequency and sophistication, the demand for cybersecurity professionals far outpaces the supply. According to cybersecurity ventures, it is an industry with zero per cent unemployment rates. If you are considering entering cybersecurity, the right time is now.
  2. Higher Pay: According to Burning Glass’s report on cybersecurity hiring, cybersecurity jobs account for 13% of all information technology jobs. On average, cybersecurity jobs pay 16% more than IT jobs.
  3. Challenging Field: As a cybersecurity professional, you will be provided with a continuous challenge to protect your organisations from attackers. With the constant technological and business changes, you will keep learning new tools and technologies. Your upward mobility will be faster with enhanced knowledge, skills, expertise and experience.
  4. Job Satisfaction: The ICS2 study found high job satisfaction among cybersecurity professionals. You will be satisfied that you make a real difference in people’s lives. As a cybersecurity professional, you will be protecting their personal information like bank details, health records, etc., or you will be involved in the protection of critical infrastructure like the electric grid. One of the most exciting aspects of cybersecurity is that the field can be applied to many different industries, from corporations to government to non-profit organisations and SMEs. With the right skills, expertise and experience, you can decide the sector in which you want to work and the prospects in the field are unlimited.

In Conclusion, I would like to say in a world that is dealing with growing threats of cybercrimes, pursuing a career in cybersecurity not only opens doors to a world of possibilities for aspiring professionals but also empowers them to be strong defenders of the digital world.


(The author is Dr. Pintu Shah, Assistant Professor at NMIMS Mukesh Patel School of Technology Management & Engineering (MPSTME), Mumbai, and the views expressed in this article are his own)


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