Tech grads, professionals see growing cachet in cybersecurity jobs

Tech grads, professionals see growing cachet in cybersecurity jobs

Cybersecurity is not only one of the Asia-Pacific's quickest-growing markets - set to hit US$30 billion by 2020 - it is increasingly also a "hip and exciting" sector for technology graduates and professionals, said Paul Chong, president and chief executive of Singapore-based Certis Cisco Security.

He was speaking to The Business Times on Monday on the sidelines of the relaunch of e-Cop, a Certis Cisco and Temasek-owned cybersecurity startup now known as Quann.

"Quann's rebranding comes at a time of growing demand for cybersecurity and evolving complexities in cyber threats brought about by greater interconnectedness as well as workplace policies such as Bring Your Own Device," noted Mr Chong.

For instance, an employee who connects his own printer to his workplace device may unknowingly or otherwise leak privileged company information. "It's become easier," he said.

With the relaunch, Quann will add physical security monitoring to its network of security operations centres and provide an end-to-end solution to protect both the physical and digital assets of its clients.

Quann manages the Singapore government's Cyber Watch Centre, which was established in 2007 to provide round-the-clock monitoring of cyber threats to critical installations in the public sector. Other clients include telcos and banks.

Quann will expand its infrastructure and operations within and beyond Asia - into Europe and the US. It has also signed new partnerships with big US names Palo Alto Networks and Team8 to add new cybersecurity technologies to its offerings.

"This positions us well to achieve our ambition of four-fold growth by 2020 and become the Asia-Pacific leader in cybersecurity," said Quann managing director Foo Siang-tse.

On Monday, the company signed two memoranda of understanding with the National University of Singapore and Singapore Management University to jointly develop cybersecurity training courses and work opportunities for students and professionals.

Mr Foo is confident that interest will be high. "Quann is of a scale to provide multiple career pathways for its employees - from R&D to operations to sales."

Mr Chong added: "It's a fun, responsible workplace!"

Founded in 2000, Quann saw annual revenue growth of over 30 per cent a year from 2011 to 2015, reportedly surpassing the industry's growth rate of 13.7 per cent. It now has 300 employees - mostly millennials - in Singapore, Malaysia, Hong Kong, Thailand and India.


This article was first published on March 22, 2016.
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