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November 17, 2014

Companies told to ‘hire a hacker’

Hackers could keep businesses ahead of the cyber security game

By CBR Staff Writer

The struggle for specialist cyber skills is so great that half of businesses would consider hiring a hacker to keep ahead of the game, according to research.

Consultant KPMG surveyed c-suite executives and found almost three quarters (74 per cent) believe they are facing new cyber security challenges that demand new IT skills.

As much as 57 per cent of senior managers agree it has become more difficult to retain staff in specialised cyber skills in the last two years.

KPMG suggests the skills gap is forcing many companies to consider extreme measures, with 53 per cent of respondents suggesting they would consider using a hacker to bring inside information to their security teams.

Just over half of executives (52 per cent) would also consider recruiting an expert even if they had a previous criminal record.

Serena Gonsalves-Fersch, head of KPMG’s Cyber Security Academy, said UK companies should take stock of their cyber defence capabilities and act to fill the gaps.

"The fact that companies are considering former hackers as recruits clearly shows how desperate they are to stay ahead of the game," she said.

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The research was conducted in October 2014 amongst 300 IT and HR c-suite executives, with participants from organisations ranging in size from 500 to 10,000 employees.



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