Is Cyber Security a good career choice in India?
By Arijit Banerjee
According to a recent study, India witnessed a staggering 457% increase in cyber-crime related incidents under the IT Act, 2000, between 2011 and 2016. Another report indicates that at least one cyber-crime was reported every 10 minutes in India in 2017, up from 12 minutes in 2016.
Growing Need for a Safe Digital Environment
At present, the growth in ‘networked’ economy has also fuelled massive growth in cyber-crime, making it a cause for concern among most organisations, both public and private. According to a 2018 study by IBM and the Ponemon Institute, the average data breach can cost a company $3.86 million, while a large-scale breach can cost a whopping $350 million!
Gemalto, a world leader in digital security, indicated that more than four billion records were compromised to data breaches in the first half of 2018. Another report revealed that 1.76 billion records were leaked in January 2019 alone.
Therefore, it's no surprise that companies are willing to pay millions to cyber security experts so they can keep their IT infrastructure secure against such malicious attacks.
Yet, there is a vast gap between the demand and supply. In fact, the need for skilled security professionals is one of the top challenges faced by businesses today.
“According to the (ISC)2 research, the shortage of cyber security professionals is close to three million globally. APAC is experiencing the highest shortage, at around 2.15 million, in part thanks to its growing economies and the new cyber security and data privacy legislations being enacted throughout the region.”
Talking specifically about India, NASSCOM predicts that India would need over one million cyber security professionals by 2020. This overwhelming need for cyber security experts in India is not surprising, though.
With demonetisation and the subsequent implementation of initiatives such as digital India, giant strides have been taken towards digitisation, which with it brings an increasing vulnerability to cyber attacks. Compliance with general data protection regulations, implemented late last year, is another contributing factor to the growing demand for cyber security experts.
To help bridge this gap between demand and supply, several top colleges have introduced basic cyber security training courses and cyber security training certifications for students and professionals who have the necessary knowledge and knack for this field.
Until now, no formal education was available in the area since most cyber security experts around the world come from diverse fields and are mainly self-taught. However, with the rapid advancement in technology and the evolving nature of cyber-crime, a cybersecurity fundamentals training can better prepare students so they can counter the trained cyber criminals of today! Presently, it is also possible to pursue online cyber security courses from reputed national and international universities.
A Mentally And Financially Satisfying Career Option
For students and professionals who are naturally curious and inclined towards pursuing a career in software and technology, cyber security offers an unmatched opportunity to work in a dynamic environment and get handsomely paid for it.
According to KPMG, the annual compensation for cyber security heads ranges from 2 Cr to 4 Cr annually. The industry also reports a satisfaction level of 68%, making it a mentally and financially satisfying career for most.
Of course, the right training will make your CV more attractive to potential employers and enrolling for a cybersecurity course could be the first step to getting started on the career of your dreams.