The soaring popularity of information security will lead to a surplus of people in the industry and leave many unable to find work, according to (ISC)2.John Colley, managing director EMEA of the industry body, believes the information security profession is going through an evolutionary phase, with a shortage of qualified information security professionals pushing up demand and salaries.
Yet, paradoxically he warns, this will lead to a glut of qualified people wanting to enter the profession, far exceeding the number of jobs available.
"Information security is evolving," he said. "There is huge demand for these skills, and the shortage of qualified people is pushing up salaries. But, this will lead to an overabundance of potential employees that will outstrip the number of available roles. The profession will become more mainstream, the market will become oversupplied and salaries will fall. This is in the future, but could very well happen."
Colley believes that, at present companies are dropping their requirements to find the staff to do the jobs.
"The shortage of skilled people means the level of experience is actually dropping at the moment," he added. "The demand is outstripping supply and companies are already prepared to hire somebody with less experience and invest the money in training and supervision instead, because there aren't the people to do the work."
Emma Tabeshfar, head of the standards and compliance team of Barclay's group technology risk management division agrees.
"The information security industry is changing," she said. "Visibility of the subject has grown in recent years. There is greater communication about and awareness of the area, and increasing numbers of people are excited by it and want to work in this profession."
She also concurs that this will inevitably lead to the number of qualified people exceeding the number of jobs.
"The CISSP qualification is a difficult qualification to get," she added. "Yet it is becoming increasingly common and, potentially, the supply will soon outstrip demand."