Stress drives cybersecurity experts away from industry

Nearly half (42%) of cybersecurity decision makers consider leaving their job within the next two years due to stress or burnout, new research shows.

According to Mimecast’s findings, stress can already have a tangible impact on some IT teams; a third of the teams viewed experienced an increased number of absences due to burnout after an attack.

Ransomware attacks in particular were identified as a significant problem, with nearly two-thirds (61%) of respondents saying that ransomware attacks have negatively impacted their mental health.

What destroys employees?

Nearly two-thirds (64%) of respondents said they had experienced at least one ransomware attack in the past year, rising to 75% for businesses in the UAE, according to the survey.

Two-fifths (40%) of organizations also reportedly experienced significant downtime from ransomware attacks – although this figure varies widely from 27% in Scandinavia to 49% in the UK

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But that’s not all, 58% of cybersecurity professionals surveyed say their role is getting more stressful every year.

These results shouldn’t really come as a surprise, 2021 was a peak year for ransomware as criminals tried to take advantage of some of the endpoints opened up by hybrid works.

A suspected high-stress ransomware attack brought a major US gas pipeline – The Colonial Pipeline – to a halt in May 2021, triggering a regional emergency declaration in 17 states.

Worryingly, there may be no guarantee that there will be enough new entrants in the industry to replace burnt-out career changers.

The Cybersecurity Workforce Study of (ISC)2 in 2022 shows that the workforce gap in the cybersecurity industry has grown by more than a quarter (26.2%) year-over-year as demand exceeds supply. (opens in new tab)


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