Security

Report: 48% more IT professionals are taking security training

As cyber attacks continue to make headlines, more IT professionals are undergoing security training and assessments, paid for by their employers, according to a new report.

Enterprises are investing more heavily in cybersecurity training than in the past, according to a new report from testing provider Pearson VUE. Among 6,605 US IT professionals surveyed in the last year, there was 48% increase in those taking security training, and a 60% increase in those taking security exams, compared to the year before, according to Pearson VUE.

Further, enterprises are encouraging this extra training: Employers funded this security training for 53% of respondents, according to the survey, while 26% of respondents said they paid for it themselves.

This makes sense, as cybercrimes including mobile attacks and ransomware are on the rise, while many enterprises report a lack of qualified cybersecurity applicants available. For example, a recent report from the nonprofit ISACA found that 55% of organizations reported that open cyber positions take at least three months to fill, while 32% said they take six months or more. And, 27% of US companies said they are unable to fill cybersecurity positions at all, ISACA found.

One-third of tech leaders had trouble finding cybersecurity staff last year, according to a recent TechRepublic CIO Jury poll.

SEE: 4 tips to help your business recruit, and keep, cybersecurity pros

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Image: iStockphoto/Rallef

More than 61% of IT professionals said that obtaining a certification had a positive impact on their work. And some 40% of IT professionals said they plan to take a security certification exam in the following year—the most popular choice, followed by networking (31%) and servers (22%).

"Our research shows IT employers in the USA are taking security seriously, with an upward trend in them paying for security training and assessment. Employers' investment in staff training and certification indicates that they see this as a way to benefit both their staff and their business," said Bob Whelan, managing director of Pearson VUE, in a press release. "Many employees are immediately benefiting from training and certification, which could explain why nearly 90 percent intend obtaining a further certification in the next 12 months."

The increase in training may also be a sign that more people are becoming "accidental" security professionals. These are people—especially women—who enter the field from other careers, including IT, law, compliance, and government, to fill a company need.

To learn more about programs that can help you break into a cybersecurity career, click here.

The 3 big takeaways for TechRepublic readers

  1. Among IT professionals, there was 48% increase in those taking security training, and a 60% increasing in those taking security exams, compared to the year before, according to a survey from Pearson VUE.
  2. More than half of respondents said that their employer was paying for their security training.
  3. The increase is likely due to the number of increasingly sophisticated cyber attacks that target enterprises, and a lack of access to outside cybersecurity talent.

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About Alison DeNisco

Alison DeNisco is a Staff Writer for TechRepublic. She covers CXO and the convergence of tech and the workplace.

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