HelpSystems Blog

How to Solve the Cybersecurity Skills Gap on IBM i

Everyone from Bank Info Security to Fast Company has offered a perspective on the cybersecurity skills gap, making it one of the top cybersecurity stories of 2016.

Threats are increasing and attackers are becoming more sophisticated. The demand for experienced professionals to secure sensitive data and systems is high, but there aren’t enough qualified professionals to fill all the job openings.

Shortage of Security Pros and IBM i Skills

ISACA collected statistics and compiled an infographic showing a global shortage of 2 million cybersecurity professionals by 2019, and cybersecurity jobs growing at three times the rate of IT jobs overall.

At the same time, many IBM i (AS/400, iSeries) shops are seeing long-time systems administrators retire without leaving anyone to fill their shoes. According to the 2017 IBM i Marketplace Survey, nearly 40 percent of IBM i professionals were concerned about IBM i skills depletion.

For many organizations, the intersection of the cybersecurity skills gap and the IBM i skills gap is a great concern. Industries like healthcare, finance, and retail value IBM i for its reliability and securability. And in 2016, more than 75 percent of IBM i shops ran more than half their core business on IBM i. It’s clear that many organizations depend on this platform and would struggle to function without it.

So, what happens if you’re unable to find or retain skilled professionals who understand how to protect data on IBM i?

There are two ways to obtain the IBM i security skills you need:

  • Educate your existing workforce
  • Seek outside expertise

Both are valid options. If you looking to educate yourself or other members of your IT team, HelpSystems has a wide range of information available. Much of it is free and can be accessed online 24/7. Here are a few places to start:

All of these are great options for getting up to speed on IBM i security, but there is an even faster way to close the IBM i security skills gap: work with an expert in IBM i security.

Add an Expert to Your Team

With Managed Security Services (MSS), you leverage the knowledge of the HelpSystems IBM i security experts, which means you don’t have to worry about making the usual rookie mistakes with your security posture. You also won’t have to carve out time for IBM i security when your days are busy enough already.

Turning to experts for MSS means you’ll be able to identify vulnerabilities and misconfigurations on your system before problems occur. Preparing for your next compliance audit will also be a lot faster and easier. Plus, your in-house IT team can focus on other projects critical to the organization.

Final Thoughts

The shortages of cybersecurity and IBM i skills aren’t going away any time soon. For many businesses, these are serious concerns that demand attention in 2017. If you’re looking to expand your security knowledge, HelpSystems has great informational resources and our security advisors are happy to answer any of your questions. If your goal is to make IBM i security as easy as possible, our Managed Security Services can do that. Contact our services team to find out how to get started.

 

Get an Expert on Your Team

Managed Security Services give you a quick and painless way to close the cybersecurity skills gap. Contact us to get started.