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U.S. Cybersecurity Sector Cries for Help as Demand for Talent Soars

Filip Truta

November 12, 2018

U.S. Cybersecurity Sector Cries for Help as Demand for Talent Soars

Employer demand for cybersecurity professionals across the United States continues to soar, according to data sourced by Burning Glass Technologies. While the U.S. is home to hundreds of thousands of cybersecurity workers, plenty of seats are still vacant in IT departments across the nation.

Private and public sector employers posted an estimated 313,735 job openings for cybersecurity workers between September 2017 and August 2018, according to the job market analytics firm. Considering the number of people in the U.S, that may sound like a fair number of openings in the cybersecurity sector. However, the figure adds to 715,000-plus cybersecurity workers currently employed around the country. That makes a total of 1,028,735 jobs in cybersecurity. Based on a national population of 325.7 million people as of 2017, the U.S. could employ 0.31% of its population in cybersecurity alone.

The study was commissioned by CyberSeek, which provides data about supply and demand in the cybersecurity realm. Among specific core jobs, the top five by employer demand are:

  • cybersecurity engineer
  • cybersecurity analyst
  • cybersecurity manager/administrator
  • cybersecurity consultant and
  • penetration and vulnerability tester

The Washington, D.C., metropolitan area has the largest number of job openings for cybersecurity professionals (44,058). The top five metro areas are New York City (20,243), Dallas (12,062), Chicago (11,201), and Los Angeles (10,589), researchers found. Average salaries for core cybersecurity jobs range from $75,000 for a cybersecurity specialist/technician to $129,000 for a cybersecurity architect.

Across all occupations, 5.8 workers are employed for every job opening, the research shows. However, the cybersecurity sector has 2.3 existing workers for every opening, indicating a tight cybersecurity job market, with few opportunities to poach from other companies.

Researchers asked experts to interpret the numbers. Todd Thibodeaux, president and CEO of the Computing Technology Industry Association (CompTIA), obliged, saying:

"Efforts to address the shortage of cybersecurity workers are underway on many fronts, but progress has been frustratingly slow. The threats are real and growing, with the potential to impact the livelihood of any organization. Our current cybersecurity workforce is doing what it can to keep us protected. It's critical for private sector companies and public sector agencies to take the actions necessary to bring more people into the cybersecurity workforce, and to equip them with the appropriate education, training and certifications."

Resource-constrained security teams are increasingly struggling to manage large volumes of security alerts with disparate, marginally integrated solutions. Endpoint Detection and Response (EDR) solutions are aimed at bridging the cybersecurity talent gap by offering a single, homogeneous solution with integrated workflows and advanced forensics.

The best EDR solutions offer pre- and post-compromise forensics, intelligent scoring of suspicious activity, attack-technique visualization, real-time Indicators-of-Compromise (IoC), and automated resolution from within a single-pane platform. Advanced prevention capabilities built into EDR solutions limit the number of incidents requiring manual analysis, and ultimately eliminate the need for additional IT staff.



Filip Truta

Filip is an experienced writer with over a decade of practice in the technology realm. He has covered a wide range of topics in such industries as gaming, software, hardware and cyber-security, and has worked in various B2B and B2C marketing roles. Filip currently serves as Information Security Analyst with Bitdefender.

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