Cyber Insecurity: How Vacant Jobs Could Open Up Home Gadgets for Hackers

14th June 2017
Hacker Cyber IT Security

The nationwide ransomware attack on the NHS was stopped in its tracks by a young man who noticed that infected computers were trying to connect to a domain. As this domain was unregistered, he purchased it to observe the infection and try to ascertain its source – this action however stopped the infection in its tracks, saving the NHS further disruption and cost that could easily have reached into the millions.

This is one of numerous examples where a cyber security professional saves not only vast sums of money but also time. These talented techies are more in demand than ever and with an unemployment rate of zero, the number of vacancies is only increasing. We’ve taken a look at the cyber security role in relation to the Internet of Things and how this might be an area of growing risk that could put further demand on cyber security jobs.

Cyber Security Professionals in Demand

The CSO reported on an estimation that there will be 3.5million cyber security vacancies by 2021, an increase of 2.5million on the 1million recorded openings last year. The number of openings is increasing exponentially along with public use of gadgets that fall under the umbrella of the Internet of Things. Increasing incidences of cyber attacks the world over are also partly responsible for the rapid increase in demand. In addition, these professionals are being sought urgently as estimates to the cost of cyber crime rise to a colossal $6trillion by 2021.

So how might risk be increasing to warrant such high demand for cyber security professionals?

The Internet of Things

The Internet of Things allows for every day devices such as cars, fridges and kettles to be connected to the Internet. The clever adoption of gadgets to make our lives even easier is impressive, but the lax security often going on behind the scenes makes them vulnerable with huge scope for catastrophe if the wrong hands gain access to them.

TechRadar made some valid comments as to the types of danger society could be headed in to if these devices are not made secure. One example cited was to do with driving and cars; complex infotainment, clever parking sensors, navigation, cameras and even driverless cars are all coming to the market. However in one controlled study two hackers were able to compromise a Jeep Cherokee travelling at 70mph by turning the wheel and braking remotely – attacks of this nature could have fatal consequences for road safety.

Other ways in which hackers could cause chaos are through web cams, smart thermostats, wifi routers and wearables which are commonplace in homes across the globe. Attacks incorporating these devices are already happening too – in 2016 152,000 consumer IoT devices were used to initiate a Mirai attack on a French hosting provider inundating the company with traffic and compromising the network, causing mayhem.

It’s undeniably exciting to see what leaps forward we are able to make in technology and with the Internet of Things. However when backed up by inadequate security protocols, unchanged credentials from device defaults and neglected security updates by the consumer these clever devices bring with them inherent danger. Baring all this in mind it’s now easy to see why cyber security vacancies are growing around the world!

These talented techies are more in demand than ever and with an unemployment rate of zero, the number of vacancies is only increasing.