“We are outnumbered” screams the headline of a story recently on CNBC about the critical shortage of cybersecurity workers as attacks surge during the pandemic.

The worker shortage is a topic that’s got the attention of journalists, analysts and academics across the industry, as the industry recognizes and brings attention to Cybersecurity Awareness Month.

According to CNBC, the shortage became an acute problem this spring after COVID-19 struck because some cybersecurity workers were reassigned to other tasks, including IT support to keep the lights on as companies adjusted to changing conditions. Then the attacks picked up.

By some estimates, there’s a shortage of more than 4 million trained cybersecurity staff worldwide.

How can Entrust and our customers get through this? For starters, companies can begin by casting a wider net for talent, according to a recent report from Aite Analyst Joe Krull. He recommends that security leaders “rethink traditional location-based recruiting” and also look for workers at companies that might be downsizing or going out of business.

Recruiting new workers into the field is another common strategy discussed in the industry, especially minorities and women. Schools are recognizing the need and trying to help, as well. For example, Georgia Tech just launched a School of Cybersecurity and Privacy. Additionally, a group of professors at a small Florida college have even begun studying the use of artificial intelligence to help with that goal as they look for ways to make the field more accessible.

Some CISOs recognize the room for individuals with non-traditional backgrounds to enter the space and pull talent from other areas of the business. In fact, this mirrors Entrust’s belief that our work to secure trusted identities, payments and data is most effective when we value all identities and ensure the many voices that make up our communities are heard. To that end, Entrust’s own security team is comprised of diverse backgrounds, experience and skill sets. “Some of my strongest team members have been internal transfers who had no cybersecurity background, but had internal product or business knowledge – which I think is critical to be successful,” said Mark Ruchie, Entrust’s CISO.

Entrust is dedicated to helping our customers and partners in the cybersecurity industry address the worker shortage challenge. This includes forging relationships with several universities known for their cybersecurity education and training; and looking for ways to build connections with military members who have cyber experience.  And we have made it a priority to hire summer interns to work with our internal cybersecurity team – opening opportunities for the next generation of cybersecurity talent.

We are actively recruiting for cybersecurity experts now to join the Entrust team. To learn more, please visit our careers page at https://www.entrust.com/careers.