Cyber-security is a Growing Field for IT Job-seekers

April 29, 2013

For those looking to secure prosperous IT jobs, there's one sector in particular with plenty of openings, and many are surprisingly going unfilled. The cyber-security industry, an important one at a time when countless organizations are being attacked by hackers worldwide, is currently understaffed. More cyber-warriors are needed to keep the world's data safe from intrusion, but the field is still struggling to attract young people interested in joining the industry, especially women.

TechWorld recently reported on this troubling trend, citing survey data compiled by E-Skills in partnership with Alderbridge Consulting. The study found that only 7 percent of IT professionals are aged between 20 and 29, compared to 31 percent between 30 and 39 and 21 percent from 40 to 49. The lack of female talent was also a glaring problem – only 10 percent of those in non-commercial IT positions are women..

Nigel Payne, project director at E-Skills, hopes that the industry will work to reverse this trend soon by bringing in more young talent.

"This research offers real insight into training and qualification issues in the cyber-security industry," Payne said. "Attracting new talent, of both sexes, into the sector is critical, and we need to make sure that new entrants can easily identify and follow a worthwhile career path. The easier it is for them to find the training and qualifications they need, the faster they will become successful and productive assets to their employers."

Follow the money
There is good news – attracting more talent to the cybersecurity field shouldn't be too difficult considering the money to be made in the sector. Nextgov recently reported data found by InformationWeek's Salary Survey for 2013 – the news source polled 682 security professionals across a variety of industries and found that while the median salary had decreased by $2,000, the security field in particular was doing much better. Management salaries in the sector were especially strong, increasing by $5,000 to a new high of $120,000 per year.

Cybersecurity professionals also said that on the whole, they were very happy with their jobs. Among the employees polled, 63 percent said they were satisfied in their current positions. Additionally, the jobs are secure – 89 percent said they feel secure in their current jobs, which is a slight drop from 2012 but still an impressively high level.

There are plenty of IT jobs out there, but perhaps none are more gettable or lucrative than those in the security field. Employment-seekers should take note.