McAfee Technologies Is Building a Sustainable Model for Cybersecurity Talent

Depending on whose study you actually believe, there is going to be a shortage of 1.5 million or more professionals of cybersecurity in the year 2020. As McAfee technologies re-emerged from Intel as an independent organization, we have stood up our own fusion of converged physical and center of security operations (SOC) functions in the past nine months. We have been very mindful of both the opportunity and the problem. For any information, you can also visit

Working on building out our SOC capabilities, we have required to hire analysts, advanced threat researchers, and several engineers in quite a short order. Then there has been the requirement to standardize the approach and knowledge to managing cyber threats for one of the leading cybersecurity software organizations of the world.

So we have gone through a quite intense period of serious training. Everyone has received 80 hours of online training, 40 hours of on-the-job training and 40 hours of classroom training. We have also hired a staff of SOC from within our own professional service, various engineering teams, and a lot of sales engineers.

But all of this can quickly be undone by the pressures of working in a demanding, intense 24/7 environment and by other organizations making our people offer that they cannot refuse. McAfee technologies just published a new study on this challenge which is never-ending, Winning the Game.

In this study of 950 professionals of cybersecurity and a lot of managers in seven developed economy countries all around the globe, we found that there are three very clear factors with which organizations can easily win the game when it comes to cybersecurity. These are given as follows:-

  1. Happy workers
  2. Playing more games
  3. Automation

In organizations that generally have experienced a breach in the past 12 months, those staff who are satisfied extremely are, on average, more likely to report much fewer hours to identify the breach (11 hours) than those who are quite dissatisfied (23 hours).

Similarly, automation is also an indicator that is quite positive for the ability of an organization to retain and attract top talent. Nearly one-third of respondents cite the main opportunity to work with brand new technology such as machine learning, automation, and Artificial Intelligence as a key factor that would attract them to a new job and influence their absolute decision to move.

And, there is a correlation between the happier cybersecurity staff and the use of gamification. More than half (54 percent) of respondents who are completely satisfied in their roles say they use to capture the flag gaming once or more in a respective year, compared to just 14 percent of those similar employees who are dissatisfied in their particular roles. (At McAfee technologies, we run table-top exercises every respective two weeks, and red team exercises every month.)

So what does this say for building a model for talent management and development that is sustainable for now and for the upcoming future?

McAfee technologies think of the staffing challenge as a huge series of waves that are constantly churning one upon the other. To ride these particular waves, we require to design talent programs that are quite nimble at inception.

In the beginning, McAfee builds strong teams with new hires and interns focusing on investing in quite a strategic talent. The objective is to invest in talent so the entire organization can be quite successful – IT or Engineering or SE or Sales or Customer Support. Hopefully, some will stay in the organization. This usually helps us to strengthen the enterprise by creating more safer and secure aware teams, instilling a culture of security that will carry across the entire business.

John Woods is a self-professed security expert; he has been making the people aware of the security threats. His passion is to write about Cybersecurity, malware, social engineering, Games,internet and new media. He writes for McAfee products at or .


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