Cyber Security Experts Needed in Australia

Technology is one of the fastest growing sectors in Australia and with digital transformation on the rise, the workforce needs to keep growing. According to Australia’s Digital Pulse 2019, the  latest annual investigation into the state of the country’s IT sector more than100,000 tech workers are needed by 2024.

The Australian Associations of ICT Profesioanls (ACS) President, Yohan Ramasundara, says Australia has to keep preparing itslelf for the fourth industrial revolution. “Meeting the voracious demands for more technology workers and increased investments from Australia’s businesses will be a huge challenge,” said. 

The fact there is a chronic shortage sees students snapped up before graduation.

As businesses and organisations around the world shore up their defences against cyber threats, the demand for cyber experts has dramatically increased.

Supply is not keeping up with Demand
Although Australia is facing a general IT skills shortages, the lack of cyber experts might be attributed to the special set of skills needed for these roles, although Australia is well-poised to become a breeding ground for cyber-security professionals.
Richard Buckland is a Professor in Cyberwar, Cybercrime, and Cyber-terror at the University of New South Wales. His experience with sending cyber students into the workforce has been tremendously positive.

“I certainly meet employers a lot and they’re really keen to come out to the uni and meet the students..... They often ask if I can put them in touch with some of my good students and I have to say ‘I can’t because they’ve already got jobs”” Professor Buckland has said.

The wide range of skills required to excel in cyber means there is often a dearth of talented specialists.“Cyber’s all about breaking the rules so we need people with a devious, lateral thinking, skeptical mindset,” says Professor Buckland. 

This last trait, being a rascal, is especially important to thrive in cybersecurity’s attacker/defender world.

For employers and educators alike, the idea of fostering non-conventional thinking can trigger alarm bells. Not only does Professor Buckland think the education system ought to encourage more rascal thinking and less conformity, he has also discovered a profound level of trustworthiness in unlikely places. Even if these various traits are rare to find in combination, Professor Buckland thinks Australia is uniquely positioned to continue producing high-quality cybersecurity experts.

“Australia is well-placed to have great cyber strength because our national characteristics of fairness, of decency, our sense of patriotism, coupled with a sense of skepticism, a sense of humour, and a sense of rascal playfulness, and really that’s the perfect storm for a good cyber person.”

ACS Insights 1:       ACS Insights 2:

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