One million cyber security specialists needed to tackle world’s hackers

By: January 21, 2014
cyber security guide Companies are increasingly investing in forensic and investigation activities to ensure confidential data and financial records are kept secure

There is a worldwide shortage of at least one million online security professionals while the threat to companies from malware and hackers has never been so high.

The Cisco 2014 Annual Security Report paints a startling picture of just how badly prepared most companies and organisation are in the face of increasing attacks by hackers and cyber criminals.

“Threats designed to take advantage of users’ trust in systems, applications and personal networks have reached startling levels,” says Cisco.

“Simple attacks have given way to organised cybercrime operations that are sophisticated, well-funded, and capable of significant economic and reputational damage to public and private sector victims.”

Cisco says overall vulnerabilities and threats in 2013 reached the highest level since initial tracking began in May 2000.

Key findings from the report say:
• Increased complexity of threats and solutions are due to rapid growth in smartphones and tablets, and due especially to people who bring their own mobile devices to work.

• The report indicates a shortage of more than a million security professionals across the globe in 2014.

• One-hundred percent of a sample of 30 of the world’s largest multinational company networks generated visitor traffic to websites that host malware.

• Multipurpose Trojans counted as the most frequently encountered web-delivered malware, at 27 percent of total encounters in 2013.

• Java continues to be the most frequently exploited programming language targeted by online criminals.

• Ninety-nine percent of all mobile malware targeted Android devices.

• In 2012 and 2013, there was remarkable growth in malware encounters for the agriculture and mining industry—formerly a relatively low-risk sector. Malware encounters also continued to rise in the energy, oil and gas sectors.