Gartner: Less than two thirds of businesses have a cybersecurity expert
Having surveyed more than 3,000 global CIO’s across a range of leading industries, Gartner has found that less than two thirds of companies have a cybersecurity expert, despite 95% expecting cyberthreats to rise during the next three years.
As technology evolves, so do cyberattacks, making it increasingly difficult for businesses to anticipate how they will next be targeted. With this in mind, a lack of expertise and/ or defensive may leave businesses increasingly vulnerable to cybercrime.
“In a twisted way, many cybercriminals are digital pioneers, finding ways to leverage big data and web-scale techniques to stage attacks and steal data,” said Rob McMillan, Research Director at Gartner.
“CIOs can't protect their organizations from everything, so they need to create a sustainable set of controls that balances their need to protect their business with their need to run it.”
Further, the report states that skills shortages and the growing cyber talent gap are set to continue to inhibit global progress in digitalisation and innovation.
“Cybersecurity is faced with a well-documented skills shortage, which is considered a top inhibitor to innovation,” McMillan continues. “Finding talented, driven people to handle the organization's cybersecurity responsibilities is an endless function.”
As a result, Gartner recommends that Chief Information Security Officers (CISOs) take it upon themselves to diversify the skill sets of their security teams, enhancing their individual capabilities in order to reduce this growing skills gap.
According to Gartner, 60% of security budgets will be in support of detection and response capabilities by 2020 as businesses learn to recognise the need to combat the rising levels and complexity of cybercrime.
SAS: Improving the British Army’s decision making with data
SAS’ long-standing relationship with the British Army is built on mutual respect and grounded by a reciprocal understanding of each others’ capabilities, strengths, and weaknesses. Roderick Crawford, VP and Country GM for SAS UKI, states that the company’s thorough grasp of the defence sector makes it an ideal partner for the Army as it undergoes its own digital transformation.
“Major General Jon Cole told us that he wanted to enable better, faster decision-making in order to improve operational efficiency,” he explains. Therefore, SAS’ task was to help the British Army realise the “significant potential” of data through the use of artificial intelligence (AI) to automate tasks and conduct complex analysis.
In 2020, the Army invested in the SAS ‘Viya platform’ as an overture to embarking on its new digital roadmap. The goal was to deliver a new way of working that enabled agility, flexibility, faster deployment, and reduced risk and cost: “SAS put a commercial framework in place to free the Army of limits in terms of their access to our tech capabilities.”
Doing so was important not just in terms of facilitating faster innovation but also, in Crawford’s words, to “connect the unconnected.” This means structuring data in a simultaneously secure and accessible manner for all skill levels, from analysts to data engineers and military commanders. The result is that analytics and decision-making that drives innovation and increases collaboration.
Crawford also highlights the importance of the SAS platform’s open nature, “General Cole was very clear that the Army wanted a way to work with other data and analytics tools such as Python. We allow them to do that, but with improved governance and faster delivery capabilities.”
SAS realises that collaboration is at the heart of a strong partnership and has been closely developing a long-term roadmap with the Army. “Although we're separate organisations, we come together to work effectively as one,” says Crawford. “Companies usually find it very easy to partner with SAS because we're a very open, honest, and people-based business by nature.”
With digital technology itself changing with great regularity, it’s safe to imagine that SAS’ own relationship with the Army will become even closer and more diverse. As SAS assists it in enhancing its operational readiness and providing its commanders with a secure view of key data points, Crawford is certain that the company will have a continually valuable role to play.
“As warfare moves into what we might call ‘the grey-zone’, the need to understand, decide, and act on complex information streams and diverse sources has never been more important. AI, computer vision and natural language processing are technologies that we hope to exploit over the next three to five years in conjunction with the Army.”
Fundamentally, data analytics is a tool for gaining valuable insights and expediting the delivery of outcomes. The goal of the two parties’ partnership, concludes Crawford, will be to reach the point where both access to data and decision-making can be performed qualitatively and in real-time.
“SAS is absolutely delighted to have this relationship with the British Army, and across the MOD. It’s a great privilege to be part of the armed forces covenant.”