By Meeta Ramnani - May 28, 2019 3 mins read
The challenge of protecting enterprises against cyber threats has become harder with an increase in the number of attacks and a shortage of cybersecurity professionals. Overburdened with work, cybersecurity professionals are burnt out and fatigued
Many enterprises struggle to manage cybersecurity threats. In an increasingly digitized world, cybercriminals are getting more persistent every day, growing the attack surface. The challenge of protecting company networks against cyber threats is made harder by the shortage of cybersecurity professionals, which increases pressure on the employees leading to burnout.
Cybersecurity has become a key business challenge. Cybersecurity fatigue is experienced by professionals who are overwhelmed by the need to stay alert all the time to the latest threats.
Experts describe cybersecurity fatigue as a decrease in cybersecurity awareness and an increase in risky behavior. Facing this constant business challenge has led some professionals to ignore the risks and postpone crucial investment decisions. As the cybersecurity skills shortage is increasing, it is causing a negative effect on security professionals and their organizations.
According to ESG research, 51% of organizations have a ‘problematic shortage’ of cybersecurity skills in 2018, which is up from 45% in 2017. Since organizations don’t have the right sized teams; they operate in a perpetually understaffed mode. The whole of the cybersecurity team is also always not updated on advanced skills like security analytics, cloud computing security, or forensic investigations, which again puts more pressure on the most experienced staffers.
Over 70% of cybersecurity professionals believe that the skills shortage has had an impact on their organization. The cybersecurity skills shortage has led to situations where employees are spending a disproportional amount of time dealing between high-priority issues and incident response. Almost 40% of professionals say that the skills shortage has led to high attrition and burnout rates, and 60% of security professionals are not satisfied with their jobs. This affects cybersecurity pros and the enterprises they work for.
Some steps to reduce the risk of cybersecurity fatigue setting into office culture include:
It is essential that cybersecurity is not purely the responsibility of the security and the IT team. All the employees, from leadership positions and down, are responsible for protecting the organization’s data.
62% of professionals also believe their organization does not provide an adequate level of training to keep up with the risks. It is widely observed that enterprises need to provide cybersecurity training to their staff that is relevant and updated continuously. Also, commissioning a simulated social engineering attack will mirror the attack techniques and test the effectiveness of the procedures and systems.
Experts suggest that to relieve the pressure from the in-house IT team by providing advice and guidance from experts will not just ensure that businesses make the right security investments. Security experts can operate as an extension of the in-house resources by delivering services like 24/7 network, and endpoint monitoring will help to ease the strain on the team, which can help them focus on other essential tasks.
Cybersecurity job fatigue is a real, troubling, and a growing problem which is an increasingly dangerous threat. CISOs must address this by assessing the state of mind of key staff members, providing the right levels of support and stress relief programs.
Meeta Ramnani is the Senior Editor with OnDot Media. She writes about technologies including AI, IoT, Cloud, Big Data, Blockchain across various industries with a focus on Digital Transformation. An avid bike rider, Meeta, is a postgraduate from Indian Institute of Journalism and New Media (IIJNM) Bangalore, where her specialization was Business Journalism. She carries four years of experience in mainstream print media where she worked as a correspondent with The Times Group and Sakal Media Group in Pune.
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