Editorial

UK’s biggest cybersecurity players? The Big Four accountants

Job site Indeed says that KPMG and PwC are Britain’s biggest recruiters of cyber security experts, with EY and Deloitte close behind – making the ‘Big Four’ the country’s top four hirers of IT professionals with this speciality

Posted 22 May 2019 by

KPMG and PwC are well ahead of all UK organisations when it comes to hiring cybersecurity experts – with 6% of all new KPMG recruits and 5% of all new hires at the latter being such IT professionals.

The two other members of the accountancy sector’s famed ‘Big Four’, EY and Deloitte round out the top four employers for this type of IT role, at 1.99% and 1.47% respectively in terms of their current job vacancies.

The data comes from job site Indeed, which also reports that number five in its list is telecoms giant Vodafone.

The rest of the top 20 cybersecurity specialist hirers includes a large contingent of financial and technology firms, with retailer Sainsbury’s the one company of a different category to make the list: IBM is 13th, for example, BT 15th, and Aviva 7th, for example.

The firm’s data also shows that the job title ‘IT security specialist’ is the most in-demand cyber security role in the UK, with nearly three times as many vacancies as second placed ‘security engineer’.

And it’s also a job that commands a pretty hefty salary – an average of £45,722, Indeed has found advertised through its service. To put that in context, the average UK salary is £27,600, yet the top five paying cybersecurity roles have a combined average of £45,851 a year.

Commenting on his research, for Indeed’s UK Managing Director, Bill Richards, “Every aspect of a modern company relies on its IT, and the growing threat of cyber attack and tightening of privacy laws means demand is rising fast for professionals who are able to protect companies’ most precious information.

“By definition, accountancy firms need to store lots of sensitive financial information, and they therefore require robust cyber defences. Nevertheless, it’s striking that the ‘Big Four’ dominate all four top spots in our league table of the UK’s most prolific cyber hirers. Another telling observation is how [our] list comprises entirely of private sector companies as the corporate world builds digital defence lines. 

“The critical importance of their work, the skill and discretion it requires, and strong demand from employers have combined to drive up cyber professionals’ salaries.

“Cybersecurity is both a hot topic and a lucrative profession right now.”