Survey Shows Gap Between IT Security Skills Supply and Demand

A new survey commissioned by the Computing Technology Industry Association (CompTIA) indicates a gap between employers’ need for IT security skills and their employees’ ability to provide those skills.

These findings are part of a study on skills gaps that CompTIA conducted with the Center for Strategy Research (CSR). Through a combination of a Web-based poll and phone interviews, CSR spoke with more than 3,500 IT managers in the U.S., Europe, Asia, South Africa and other countries, “just to get a sense of what types of skills they’re looking for today and where they’re finding the IT workforce coming up short,” said Steven Ostrowski, CompTIA director of corporate communications.

Among organizations surveyed in nine countries with established IT industries (Australia, Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the Netherlands, the U.K. and the U.S.), 73 percent identified security, firewalls and data privacy as the IT skills most important to their organizations. But just 57 percent said their IT employees are proficient in these security skills, a gap of 16 percentage points.

“It’s the number one thing that they want, but also has the biggest gap in terms of what’s needed and what’s available,” Ostrowski said. “That’s somewhat troubling [given] all the attention we’ve [paid] to security over these last number of years.”

According to Ostrowski, IT managers reported that they believe the IT security skills available to them are not meeting with demand “because the whole realm of IT security is so dynamic and changes so rapidly that it’s often tough…


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