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Thoughts on Cybersecurity in the COVID-19 Era

Published on Apr 22,2020 236 Views

New businesses like social media, e-commerce, content streaming and sharing economy have emerged and evolved over the past decade. These business ideas have leveraged technologies like Big Data, AI/ML, Blockchain, IoT and Autonomous Systems as enablers.

But there is a not so often talked about the technological layer, which has been the difference between rise and fall of businesses, just ask Zoom. That layer is Security, actually Cybersecurity to be precise.

2020, may not have had a good start globally. The economic activity has either paused or is working from home. Work from home expectations have already shattered for me (it’s not fun). But this has led to another pandemic, a rise in cyber attacks.

The reasons behind this cyber pandemic can largely be classified as below.

  • Underinvestment in Cybersecurity by enterprises over the years
  • Scarcity of Cybersecurity professionals
  • Gross lack of awareness & training about Cybersecurity best practices

How do we tackle these issues? Before that let’s try to map out the stakeholder involved.

  • Enterprises (huge in size with diversified interests)
  • Employees (in large numbers with multiple interests)
  • Cybersecurity Professionals (low number but one interest i.e. security)

Now as per the Law of Stakeholders (self-proclaimed law) if a certain activity involves multiple stakeholders, that activity’s success is dependent on every stakeholder fulfilling their duties OR making sure about reaching the required effort as a group (this means disproportionate involvement of each stakeholder). The most relatable example is a college group project.

Getting back to the cyber pandemic issue, to keep a company secure, an effort is needed from all 3 above-mentioned stakeholders. But, enterprises have diversified activities, employees have other tasks relevant to their duties and many times convenience trumps security. So their effort contribution is always less than the required. Now, it’s left to the 3rd stakeholder i.e. Cybersecurity professionals to cover up the deficit along with their effort. That becomes difficult with the number of existing personnel. So, how to balance out the effort gap? HIRE more! The demand for Cybersecurity professionals is so high that supply has been playing catch-up for a decade now. With 4 million unfilled jobs in Cybersecurity as of 2020, it’s a wonder why this gap still hasn’t been filled.

One simple reason “lack of awareness about a career in Cybersecurity”. People can’t think beyond “How do I hack xyz”, let alone think about a career in Cybersecurity. Facts and figures showcasing the lucrativeness about a career in Cybersecurity can be found by one simple Google search.

But then the next question is “How”, how should one plan a career in Cybersecurity. What should be the learning path, what should it encompass, how should it be learned all these are valid questions. Luckily with the boom in Ed-tech, such blind spots are getting addressed. Online education is trying to plug the skill gap by implementing teaching methodologies that prepare individuals for on-job activities while educating them. So gone are the days where people just stumbled into a Cybersecurity career now it can be planned and taken up like any other career option out there.

The ripple effect of increased Cybersecurity education can surely be seen where companies remain shielded from cyber-attacks resulting in a healthy economy. Let’s do our bit by staying home and following cyber safe work from home practices.

Check out our Post-Graduate Program in Cybersecurity by NIT Rourkela & Edureka, let’s have a conversation about learning Cybersecurity the right way!

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