Cyber = opportunity

5Country

By 2021, according to Cybersecurity Business Report, the number of unfilled jobs in cyber security will triple to over 3.5 million  In the same period the annual cost of cyber crime is expected to double to $6 trillion. If cyber was a country it will, by then, be the the third biggest in the world. It is currently the fifth biggest.

Think of the size of the threat. The money lost to cyber crime globally will be twice as big as the Gross Domestic Product of the United Kingdom.

Money will be lost through theft of intellectual property, disruption and loss of productivity, distraction from core business and increased defensive activity.

With threat though comes opportunity. Necessity is the mother of invention and with the need to fight back we will see the creation of new jobs and new services.

The North East is well placed to take advantage of this opportunity, not because it has a high concentration of leading cyber companies, but rather the willingness across business, public sector and academia to collaborate. New jobs and services will develop from the coming together of different agencies. New jobs and services will be co created.

Not having major cyber companies could well be an advantage. As Michelle Obama put it ‘You should never view your challenges as disadvantage. Instead, it’s important for you to understand that your experience facing and overcoming adversity is actually one of your biggest advantages.’

Think of the jobs that can be created. There will be technical jobs such as development of detection and defensive systems, data trend analysis, cleansing and restoration of breached applications and many more. There will also be jobs in related sectors, such as in training and awareness, legal, insurance and accountancy, reputation management and marketing, information dissemination and of course sales.

There will be an enormous demand for security products and people will be needed to build them, sell them and ship them.

Cyber is seen, rightly, as a battle between good and evil. The North East needs to grasp the opportunity to come down on the side of the good and be the best place to develop a cyber business.

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