The UK’s growing cyber industry attracted record investment last year despite the global pandemic, according to a new government report. The DCMS Annual Cyber Sector Report, which tracks the UK’s cybersecurity industry across a range of indicators between April 2019 and December 2020, reveals a 21 percent increase in firms operating in the field, bringing the total number to 1,483. Almost 50,000 people have now employed in UK cybersecurity. The sector is now worth an estimated £8.9 billion, with a record £800 million of investment raised by firms. This year’s survey also suggests that more than half of firms (54 percent) are now based outside of London and the South East, with cybersecurity clusters flourishing across the country in areas such as Scotland, Northern Ireland, and North West England.
<p>The pandemic, and the rapid move to home working, further demonstrated how crucial cybersecurity is to organisations, so it might not be that surprising that it’s one industry that has grown over the year. The important thing now is to keep building on that growth and becoming a truly professionalised industry. This means putting people at the core of cybersecurity. It means not only encouraging more diverse people into the industry but ensuring those already in it have long and fulfilling careers. Our 2020 State of the Security Profession report revealed the top reasons for leaving a cybersecurity job were a lack of opportunity or progression; unpleasant or bad management; and poor remuneration. To keep the industry from stagnating, organisations need to give clear career paths, showing precisely what skills professionals need to develop in order to keep progressing. Employers must provide access to the right training so that they can ensure employees have the knowledge and experience they need to progress. Doing this will ensure the industry continues to grow and is always innovative enough to keep up with the ever-changing threat landscape.</p>
<p style=\"font-weight: 400;\">Today’s DCMS report shows solid progress for secure employment in the UK this year, but we’re still a long way off from addressing the critical cyber skills gap, and need to make sure new hires are increasing diversity in the security industry too. A <a href=\"
data-saferedirecturl=\"https://www.google.com/url?q=https://www.womenintech.co.uk/8-facts-women-tech-industry:~:textWomen20are20still20in20the20minority20in20techtextA20recent20Tech20Nation20report,the20tech20workforce20are20women.&source=gmail&ust=1614258839303000&usg=AFQjCNFY-_uqkUhgkydC2YhPLhK2J13OHA\">recent report</a> found just 19% of the UK tech workforce were women, while Asian women make up just 5%, and Black and Hispanic women make up just 3% in an industry that’s crying out for more talent. In security, <a href=\"https://london.northumbria.ac.uk/blog/where-are-the-women-in-cyber-security\" data-saferedirecturl=\"https://www.google.com/url?q=https://london.northumbria.ac.uk/blog/where-are-the-women-in-cyber-security&source=gmail&ust=1614258839303000&usg=AFQjCNFXTgPfN553rJtDmH5WpASJNOl_Iw\">these numbers are even lower</a>. To initiate much-needed change faster, UK businesses need to develop Diversity, Equity Inclusion (DEI) goals, measure their results, and create a strategy, to affect and accelerate progress.</p> <p style=\"font-weight: 400;\"> </p> <p style=\"font-weight: 400;\">Diversity brings strength to any industry, and cybersecurity is no exception. In an industry built to anticipate and combat an extremely broad field of remote attackers, having more diversity and a range of perspectives in the field is not only a benefit but a requirement.</p>
<p>The importance of cybersecurity grows at the same exponential rate that attacks occur. Boosting the industry with homegrown talent across the UK naturally builds a communal resistance, strengthening its protection. With increased remote working, the future of the industry doesn’t need to rely on special talent being focused geographically in hotspots around the country; now anyone can move into cybersecurity should they desire to. </p> <p> </p> <p>The positive increase in firms operating in the industry alongside the added investment also boosts the country’s chances of being a big player, which in turn attracts an even better workforce.</p>