Forrester analysts share their perspective on gender equality in the security market ahead of International Women’s Day:
Stephanie Balaouras, Vice President & Research Director
“The cybersecurity industry is making enormous strides, but with women occupying only 11% of cybersecurity positions, the playing field is still not close to level. The industry needs to change its recruiting and retainment efforts to better the workplace for women and all employees as it fills the millions of open jobs.”
Fatemeh Khatibloo, Vice President & Principal Analyst
Within the corporation, privacy is increasingly moving to the security team and under the purview of chief security officers. I think this is an area we need to really make sure we’re making room for women – and all diversity, frankly. Security, unlike privacy, has always been a very male dominated field – and continues to be.”
Enza Iannopollo, Senior Analyst
“While the privacy field enjoys a more equal male-female distribution among its professionals, the cybersecurity space has been historically dominated by men. Interestingly, women represent just 11% of cybersecurity professionals worldwide. Forrester strongly highlighted that recruiting and retaining women is of vital importance for the cybersecurity market – And I personally believe that it’s starts with some cultural change. I think privacy can help.
As a result of regulatory requirements as well as market dynamics, many firms today have hired privacy officers and grown their privacy teams. These new entrants have strong working relationship with their security counterparts, sometimes they are part of the same team. And this is an opportunity to drive that much needed cultural change: male professionals will break out of their male-only environments, maybe they will change some of their jokes or they will be more sensitive to colleagues that need a different working-private life balance. Females, on the other hands, will feel more comfortable with technical controls and show their male colleagues that they are reliable partners even when they have to crack the most complicated technical issues.”