Cybersecurity industry expects continued growth through 2016, says industry expert

Josh Peterson Tech Editor
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The number of cybersecurity jobs is expected to increase over the next four years, industry experts told attendees of a recent two-day conference in Maryland.

John Slye, industry analyst for the market intelligence firm GovWin, told the CyberMaryland conference that he expects Defense Department cybersecurity spending to increase from $4.4 billion in 2011 to $6.7 billion by 2016. Civilian agency cybersecurity spending, he said, will increase from $2.6 billion to $3.8 billion during the same period of time.

He also projected cybersecurity spending by intelligence agencies will increase from an estimated $2.6 billion in 2011 to $3.6 billion in 2016.

Government and private sector concerns over network intrusions from organized crime, state-sponsored actors and hacktivists is driving the recruitment push, The Baltimore Sun reported Friday.

The region is already a hotbed for technology jobs.

Maryland is home to U.S. Cyber Command and the National Security Agency. Offices of various government cybersecurity contractors — including Raytheon, SAIC, ManTech International, General Dynamics, Lockheed Martin Corporation and Northrop Grumman — are located in the Maryland and Virginia suburbs of Washington, D.C.

Nearly 50 percent of the world’s Internet traffic flows through data centers located in Northern Virginia. An independent Internet speed survey by PC Magazine found that Alexandria, Va., was the city with the fastest Internet speeds in the U.S.

U.S. Army Gen. Keith Alexander, NSA Director and U.S. Cyber Command commander, made a recruitment appeal to hackers at the July’s annual DEFCON conference in Las Vegas.

The controversial Cybersecurity Act of 2012, shot down in the Senate in August, also included a provision that would have allowed the federal government to begin recruiting cybersecurity talent as early as kindergarten.

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