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Further IT security budget cuts not expected for 2009

ISC Squared : 24 April, 2009  (Technical Article)
Survey of IT security professionals by ISC2 shows budget cuts experienced during the last 6 months now stabilising with further cuts unlikely for the remainder of the year
Seventy-two percent of over 2500 information security professionals responding to a survey say their budgets were reduced the past six months due to the economic downturn, while 53 percent said they did not expect any additional cuts for the remainder of the year.

The Web-based survey was sent to members of (ISC)2 ("ISC-squared"), the world's largest organisation of information security professionals and the not-for-profit global leader in educating and certifying information security professionals throughout their careers. (ISC)2 is keeping the survey open to its members globally through May 15 when final results will be disclosed.

Mirroring the security budget responses, more than 73 percent of survey respondents believe the economic downturn has had a somewhat or significant impact on their purchases of security equipment and technology; however, 50.6 percent said spending would not decrease for the remainder of 2009.

On the personnel side, roughly half of survey respondents said their information security departments had experienced at least one lay-off in the past few months. Just over 52 percent said no additional personnel cuts would be forthcoming the remainder of the year.

Of the nearly third of respondents who identified themselves as having hiring responsibilities, 43 percent said they were looking to hire additional information security staff this year. The areas of expertise most sought after by those seeking candidates were information risk management, operations security, access control systems and methodology, security management practices, and applications and systems development security.

" While we are being affected, generally Information security is a profession that is weathering the recession well as companies continue to recognise that security competency is both a business imperative and a means to achieving cost -cutting operational changes," said John Colley, CISSP, Managing director, (ISC)2 Europe. "ISC)2 is dedicated to helping our members throughout their careers, and that includes during challenging economic times."

To assist information security professionals seeking positions or looking to charter their careers in a challenging economy, (ISC)2 is sponsoring Job Market Cafes for members and attendees of Infosec 2009 in London Wednesday, April 29 from 2:15-4:30 pm. in the Wellington room, Earls Court.

Representatives of three specialist recruiting firms - Barclay Simpson, Acumin and Information Security Solutions - will lead 30-minute interactive round table discussions offering insight into current demand on the job market: sectors that are hiring; skills that are in demand; most relevant certifications in the market and the gaps that employers are struggling to fill. The sessions will then be open to questions and discussion from around the table.

The Job Market Cafes are part of a series of global workshops (ISC)2 is planning to assist information security professionals during the economic downturn. (ISC)2 also offers free resume posting and job alerts to its certified members on its Career Centre. Employers can post jobs and search resumes for free as well, giving them a direct line to an audience of qualified information security professionals.
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