Lack of talent remains the biggest issue in cyber security


The lack of talent in the cyber security industry remains the key issue that needs to be addressed on the back of the growing digital economy.

Deputy Communications and Multimedia Minister Datuk Seri Dr Jailani Johari (picture) said cyber security talent pool in Malaysia is still small to face rising cyber security threats and the complexity of the digital landscape.

“Human element is perceived to be the weakest link in the cyber security chain. The overall funnel of new talent is too small and not enough to sustain and support the growing demand of our digital economy,” Jailani said at the launch of the Asia Cybersecurity Exchange (AsiaCyberX) in Subang Jaya yesterday.

Additionally, Jailani highlighted the issue of awareness and ethics as part of the human factors that require strategic measures by the government and private sector alike.

He cited that standards and regulations need to be put in place to create the highest level of systems and information protection to handle valuable data and information in cyber security.

Globally, the recent AT Kearney Cybersecurity Asean study showed that the top 1,000 Asean companies risk losing up to US$750 billion (RM2.9 trillion) in market capitalisation due to cyber security risks.

Such implication of the cyber security threats on corporate business is expected to boost Asean cyber security expenditure to grow 15% annually between the years 2015 and 2025.

Currently, Malaysia is one of the top three Asean countries to contribute 75% of its cyber security services market share by the year 2025.

To address the talent gap for future demand, AsiaCyberX — the first of such platform in South-East Asia — is initiated to promote the cyber security industry and ecosystem development, as well as cyber security entrepreneurship.

AsiaCyberX is solely owned by ACE Accelerator Network Sdn Bhd via investment holdings company ACE Group of Cos, in partnership with cyber security company LE Global Services Sdn Bhd, with sup- port from Malaysia Digital Economy Corp Sdn Bhd (MDEC).

The cyber security exchange platform will train 240 undergraduates from eight universities in a 12-month MDEC Cybersecurity Development Programme, as well as advocate cyber security entrepreneurship.

The programme will commence by this May, where each batch of trainees will undergo a six-week development programme that includes hackathons, chief information security officer roundtables and workshops, eventually leading to job placements.

On the entrepreneurial initiative, ACE Group also provides a fund of RM200 million for cyber security startups through AsiaCyberX.