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Plugging the hole in the global cybersecurity industry

Over the past year some countries have seen decreases with the numbers employed in cybersecurity and others have seen increases.

Image: © PRENSA SENADO/AFP Handout
Image: © PRENSA SENADO/AFP Handout

The cybersecurity industry has grown to 4.1 million professionals globally from 3.5 million in 2020. Within this significant population, workforces around the world are competing to be industry leaders.

The move by many companies to remote or hybrid working in response to the COVID-19 pandemic has increased the workloads for skilled IT professionals, and combined with the rising rate of ransomware attacks, this has fostered rise in demand for jobs relating to cyber-protection.

Despite the growth with the workforce, some countries have seen decreases with the numbers employed and others have seen increases.

Veriff, an international identity verification provider, has analysed the global cybersecurity workforce to reveal the top 14 countries paving the way, as well as the companies leading in recruitment and the most in-demand cybersecurity job roles.

This analysis reveals the top 10 countries with the largest cybersecurity workforce 2020 versus 2021. These are:

RankCountrySize of workforce 2020Size of workforce 2021
1United States879,1571,142,462 (1st)
2Brazil626,650581,349 (2nd)
3Mexico421,750515,527 (3rd)
4United Kingdom365,823300,087 (5th)
5South Korea232,281239,085 (7th)
6Japan226,269276,556 (6th)
7Germany175,159464,782 (4th)
8Spain122,284124,336 (10th)
9France118,302146,808 (8th)
10Australia108,950134,690 (9th)

The data set has some interesting patterns.

The biggest growth is with the U.S., where the country has developed in size of the workforce being the number one largest in cybersecurity, with a total of 1,142,462 people. While numbers have increased, a cybersecurity talent gap exists across the country.

Where a large fall has occurred is with the U.K., which has decreased in 2021 by a loss of 65,736 people. In contrast, another European country, Germany, has expanded significantly in the workforce for cybersecurity in 2021 at 464,782 compared to any other country. Because of this, Germany was ranked seventh in 2020, which has now shifted to fourth place. The lowest-ranked country for the size of a workplace in cybersecurity in 2021 is Spain pushing Australia up (2020) to ninth place. Along with France, these three countries have relatively small populations working within the cybersecurity space.

Written By

Dr. Tim Sandle is Digital Journal's Editor-at-Large for science news. Tim specializes in science, technology, environmental, and health journalism. He is additionally a practising microbiologist; and an author. He is also interested in history, politics and current affairs.

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