A report which was unveiled on Monday signaled warning concerning the grave gender imbalance when it comes to hiring for the role of Chief Information Security Officer at the Fortune 500 companies in the world. And of the top 20 companies in the Fortune 500 group, the ratio get worse with only two women holding the position, claims the report by the global market research firm.
As reported in the media, Jeff Pollard, Principal Analyst, said, “Calling a discrepancy this large a gender gap is a clear understatement. This is an emergency signal warning us that the cybersecurity industry has major issues welcoming, developing, and promoting female cybersecurity talent.”
He also added that considering the under-representation of the women in the sector, it becomes difficult to sympathize with those who claim of talent shortage in the industry.
‘The Women in Cyber Security Report’ which came out in March this year had also come up with the similar conclusion and talked about the rampant discrimination against women in the industry. It reported that women only comprised of 11% of the total workforce in the industry globally. It also talked about the discriminating wage gap with the report stating that women earn less than the men at every organizational level as compared with the men. It had also stated that though North America employed the most women in the industry as compared to other markets in the world, but the proportion of workforce: women in the top executive positions remains low at 4%, while for men it is 25%. For Asia, women comprise of only 8% of the total workforce in the industry.
The current report by Forrester highlighted that over 45% of the people who hold the position of the Chief Information Security Officer have a management background. Apart from this, the report said that the tenure of the person in the role is longer than most and up to 4 years which gives the individual plenty of time to develop plans, strategize, execute and look forward to the next step.
The report by Forrester was aimed at helping the reader understand the evolving role of the CISO, to understand the skills and the qualifications which make the leaders which are given the responsibility to defend the world’s largest companies.