2017 Predictions Part 2 - Getting over the gap: how your organization can address the security skills shortage

Protecting an enterprise today demands much more than it did in the past as security threats continue to grow in number and sophistication. There's more urgency than ever for security experts, a resource that is already scarce given the current demand – a demand that will only continue to increase in 2017 as the security skills gap widens.

Cybercriminals are constantly expanding their arsenal, coming up with new tricks, expanding their targets and adding new attack vectors. For organizations to ensure they have the proper security teams in place to fight this battle, they have two choices. One, they can seek ways to foster and build on their security experts' training, making sure their teams are constantly broadening their skills to best respond to the evolving threat landscape. Two, they can build a team of specialized security experts that can work in tandem.

In either scenario, it's clear that the traditional role of the cybersecurity expert is changing as organizations struggle to keep up with security needs. And while this shows progress in the sense that organizations are evolving and restructuring their teams in order to meet ongoing demands, it also creates added pressure not only in terms of the skills necessary to fill these new roles, but also the availability of skilled workers to get the job done.

The challenge doesn't end there. More frequently, even the most skilled IT pro will spend a bulk of their time focused on mundane, daily tasks and operations rather than dedicating their time to doing what they were initially hired to do: using their expert skills to identify and mitigate urgent, and often sophisticated, security threats. This begs the question: if your security pro is focused on routine, day-to-day tasks, who is focused on the complex job of keeping a network secure from advanced cybersecurity threats? Not to mention the fact that doing these routine tasks manually instead of automating them opens the business up to risk due to human error.

To help alleviate these challenges, save time and do more with fewer resources, we'll see more organizations adopting automation tools to help increase agility, boost security, and maintain policy compliance. Automating an organization's tedious yet necessary security tasks frees up security teams to focus on the more sophisticated tasks that require expert technical training. The use of automation tools also reduces the risk of human error and misconfigurations that occur when attempting to manage complex networks by hand.

What other solutions promise to save time and resources, while ensuring security and compliance? If your organization is experiencing pain points brought on by the security skills shortage, it's time to consider how automation solutions can address those challenges.