Robert Half: FSI in Singapore looking to increase spending on cybersecurity

FY Teng

Robert Half-a global recruitment firm specialising in the placement of accounting, finance, banking and technology professionals-announced today (June 4, 2014) key findings from a just-completed survey of 725 senior executives in the financial services industry across six markets (Australia, Hong Kong, Japan, the UAE, the UK and Singapore).

They include the following Singapore-specific results: 93 percent of the financial services leaders in Singapore surveyed (150 out of the total 725) said they planned to hire more staff to manage their company's online security (39 percent were looking to hire more permanent staff, and 54 percent temporary staff); and, 60 percent of the financial services leaders in Singapore surveyed said they anticipated increased overall spending in 2014 over 2013 on cybersecurity.

According to Stella Tang, Managing Director of Robert Half in Singapore, the banks and financial institutions in the country "are responding to the requirements and guidance issued by the Monetary Authority of Singapore to heighten vigilance and safeguard their systems" after the data of 647 private banking clients of Standard Chartered Bank was stolen late last year.

"Robert Half is seeing a spike in hiring activity for security experts, especially in the financial services sector. Companies now realise that even the best designed system and most sophisticated software protection can be hacked," said Tang. "The best safeguard against a cyber attack and loss of confidential data is a team of vigilant IT security professionals. Preventing hacking is a 24-hour job and many teams need to work around the clock in shifts, so having enough manpower is essential if security breaches are to be prevented."

"Salaries for IT security experts are also on the rise with an average 10 percent increase compared to 2013 pay levels," she added.