With the digital transformation that all industries are going through, cybersecurity experts are increasingly sought after by companies. What do they do exactly?
According to a recent study by the Gartner firm, 65% of companies have hired a cybersecurity expert, a position that has become essential in the digital economy. In an era when cyberattacks are becoming increasingly sophisticated, their IT environments have to be protected. Hence the usefulness of a security expert, as IT managers cannot generally protect their organization from every threat – which is likely to happen more in the next few years, according to the survey conducted by Gartner.
According to Luc Lefebvre, Chief Information Security Analyst at Radio-Canada, most large companies now have information security teams. “SMEs, however, don’t yet necessarily see the importance or benefit in investing in this expertise and will often opt for “machine” solutions (firewalls, antivirus and others) before hiring an expert, or they will turn to cybersecurity consultant specialists to outsource these functions,” he explains. There are therefore more hiring opportunities with large companies, consultancies, in the public sector… or right in the police forces or the military
What does a cybersecurity expert do?
Luc Lefebvre describes the tasks of security advisers as being quite broad. They can be more technical, such as software development or code auditing, administrating networks and information systems to detect intrusions or suspicious activity, or carrying out ethical hacking by trying to break into systems, and making recommendations.
Other professionals in the field might rather decide to move into management, focusing on data governance, analyzing an organization’s functioning – potential risks and threats – and drafting policies, standards and rules about digital usage for the company. Still others want to focus on prevention, training and promotion of best practices, which are constantly evolving.
According to Luc Lefebvre, “We have not adequately equipped companies and employees to cope with the realities of 2018 and the economic and social impacts, and this is beginning to be felt. Fortunately,” he continues, “Quebec is internationally recognized for its experts in the field and I am confident that with their hard work the situation will eventually stabilize.”