British companies are considering turning to ex-hackers in a bid to stay one step ahead of cyber criminals, according to latest research released today by KPMG.
The professional services company surveyed 300 senior IT and human resources professionals in firms employing 500-plus staff to assess how they were protecting themselves against cyber security breaches.
Nearly three quarters (74 per cent) said they were facing new cyber security challenges which demanded new cyber skills.
According to the research, 53 per cent of companies are consider turning to “poachers turned game-keepers” to keep up to speed. Just over half (52 per cent) would also consider recruiting an expert even if they had a previous criminal record.
Serena Gonsalves-Fersch, head of KPMG’s cyber security academy, said: “The increasing awareness of the cyber threat means the majority of UK companies are clear on their strategy for dealing with any skills gaps. However, they wouldn’t hire pickpockets to be security guards, so the fact that companies are considering former hackers as recruits clearly shows how desperate they are to stay ahead of the game.”