Cybercrime is at an all-time high, with data breach methods evolving daily. Amid this ongoing crisis, the talent pool remains small for cybersecurity experts. Earning a specialized MBA is one way for professionals to prepare themselves for leadership roles in information security management.
Thanks to emerging technologies, IT is one of the fastest growing industries in the United States. According to Mondo, many experts predict the IT field to double in size by 2024, so it is crucial to identify and hire the most qualified IT professionals to implement vital security measures. Without properly trained personnel protecting their computer networks, companies and their clients are left vulnerable to cyberattacks.
Challenges in Cybersecurity
Corporations face various challenges when it comes to protecting their most valuable information. One of these challenges is a lack of an effective protection plan in case of a data breach. The media has shed a spotlight on recent cyberattacks experienced by organizations in various industries. These corporations not only took too much valuable time to discover the exposure, but many failed to immediately notify their customers of a data breach. Some even misled them once the news of the breach went public.
According to a recent survey conducted by Identify Theft Resource Center referenced in “No Place for Passivity in Cybersecurity Leadership” published on SecurityIntelligence, 17% of respondents said their organizations were effectively minimizing security risks, which was down from 22% the previous year. Additionally, only 35% of respondents said they expected their corporate partners and cybersecurity leaders to notify them of a breach.
How Do We Find the Right Cybersecurity Leaders?
Many IT professionals aspire to work in cybersecurity but lack the experience, skills and training needed for the role. To be an effective cybersecurity leader, a blend of technical knowledge, business acumen and leadership skills are all necessary, according to Forbes. To influence change within an organization, a cybersecurity leader must feel confident in their ability to develop a mature risk management culture.
Cybersecurity managers need both hard skills (e.g., an understanding of security concepts, risk assessment and compliance standards) and soft skills, such as interpersonal communication, negotiation and strategic planning. A leader must be able to effectively use those skills to identify risk and develop actionable plans to protect the business.
The online MBA from the University of West Florida with an emphasis in Information Security Management provides the core skills necessary to assess risk and identify potential threats. The information security management curriculum also provides students with soft skills, such as teamwork, problem-solving, and communication skills to articulate managerial aspects of information security solutions to team members, senior leadership and business clients.