India will require five lakh cybersecurity professionals by 2015 to support its fast growing internet economy as per an estimate by the union ministry of information technology.
These jobs will come up across industries. The financial sector alone is expected to hire over 2 lakh people while telcos, utility sectors, power, oil & gas, airlines, government (law & order and egovernance ) will hire the rest.
A large number of these jobs will be around cyberpolicing and ethical hacking, to check for network vulnerabilities. The need for cyberexperts has grown exponentially as the country is heading towards an internet explosion mostly fuelled by e-commerce, e-banking, egovernance and the social media.
Kamlesh Bajaj, CEO of The Data Security Council of India (DSCI), a Nasscom body that frames guidelines related to data security and data privacy for corporates, said 'Security will fuel the growth of businesses. Trust is critical to build customer confidence and trust comes only through safety. Global clients are increasingly demanding high-level compliance to data security, privacy and cyber security regulations."
Awareness is catching up among stakeholders: government, the academia and the industry. For instance, a few months ago, the University Grants Commission directed all university vice chancellors in the country to introduce curriculum around cyber security in their respective colleges to meet this talent demand.
Quoting a Gartner report in its letter, UGC said, "The country's information security market is expected to grow by 18% to reach Rs 1,415 crore in 2013 on the back of increased spending by companies to secure their information assets. Despite a continuing economic slowdown that has been putting pressure on IT budgets around the world, cyber security spending globally would continue on an upward trajectory, reaching $86 billion in 2016, up from $60 billion in 2012."
Akash Agarwal, country manager, EC-Council India, a US-based firm that trains and certifies in the cyber security domain said, "Every organization across verticals will require cybersecurity professionals. Therefore, the estimate of 5 lakh looks very conservative for a strong internet economy like India. The actual requirement for cyber security professionals would be in multiples."
National Skill Development Council is also working with partners to develop cyber security talent. Nasscom along with DSCI currently operates 8 cyberlabs in Bangalore, Chennai, Pune, Thane, Mumbai, Gurgaon, Delhi and Hyderabad. "We train the police on forensic, cyber crime detection and tell them how to register cybercrimes, secure evidences as per the IT Act," said Bajaj.