Pay rises for cyber professionals stall

New research has found that although cyber has been rated the scarcest technology skill in the world, pay rises for professionals in the field are stalling.

A report from Harvey Nash Group, which surveyed nearly 6000 technologists, found that even though CISOs and security specialists are in high demand, they were ranked just joint 14th among tech roles worldwide receiving a pay rise in the past 12 months.

The study found that 67 per cent of cyber professionals did not get a pay increase over the past year, comparing poorly to many other technology-based roles.

While cyber security has always been an area where there is strong stability in salaries – with security professionals the least likely technology roles to receive a salary decrease - during the last year the Harvey Nash data shows that organisations have chosen to focus on rewarding those roles that are related to "releasing value and creating agility for the business."

The top three roles to experience pay rises were development management/team leadership (59 per cent), design/UX/UI (50 per cent), and quality assurance (50 per cent.)

The research also found that some cyber security related roles such as CISOs and security specialists are among those most likely to be automated in the next 10 years.

CISO/security specialists ranked fifth in this respect, just behind testing (1st), quality assurance (2nd), database administrating (3rd), and business intelligence/analyst (4th).

But according to Harvey Nash, this was actually welcomed by many security postholders - with attacks significantly increasing during the pandemic, part automation of their role is providing support to their expanded remit.

“Technology roles are hugely important and deserve to be well paid," said Bev White, chief executive, Harvey Nash. "In today’s environment where cyber threats are an ever-present, security roles in particular are critical to the success of organisations and should be properly remunerated."

White added: "But despite the key role that security specialists have played in keeping businesses protected during the unprecedented challenges of the pandemic and the move to mass homeworking, this doesn’t seem to have translated into pay rises for the majority of cyber professionals."

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