Protection against hacker attacks is becoming increasingly important. The British Ministry of Finance has now created a corresponding position. However, the salary expectations of the authority cause astonishment.
The number of hacker attacks has increased massively in recent years – whether on private individuals, companies, infrastructure or political institutions. In view of the possible damage, companies and government agencies spend correspondingly large sums to protect themselves against it. In the British Treasury, however, they are apparently a little more stingy. And causes astonishment.
The newly advertised position even sounds promising: “Cyber Security Manager” is the job title advertised at the end of March. It is an “exciting and important opportunity” and the position offers a “level of commitment and challenge difficult to find elsewhere.” The tasks range from managing the security team to communicating with the secret services. However, the salary does not reflect this: the authority pays just between 50,550 and 57,500 pounds (about 57,500 and 65,000 euros) a year.
Big responsibility, small salary
What would be a very good salary in some jobs seems surprisingly stingy in comparison. Indeed, the job platform Indeed shows a similar average salary for cyber security experts in Great Britain – but only for non-management jobs. According to “Glasdoor”, the salary for the management is almost three times as high at £130,000. And that for significantly less attractive targets like the Ministry of Finance.
So it’s no wonder that the job posting is met with a mixture of disbelief and malice. “Who to hire? Anyone with the expected skills and knowledge can easily charge 2-3x that,” cybersecurity expert Taz Wake tweeted. The listed locations also provide amusement. Although one can also work from Norwich and Darlington, the head office is in London. The allowance to be able to shoulder the enormously high cost of living in by far the most expensive city in the country: a whopping 3,000 euros a year.
The signal effect could hardly be worse. While successful hacker attacks repeatedly paralyze authorities, hospitals and companies, the important Ministry of Finance of all people is saving on its security. And thus indirectly signals to potential attackers that security is not far off there. “Whoever pays peanuts only gets monkeys,” Tom Lysemose Hansen of Norway’s Forma Prompon told the Telegraph harshly. “Comparable jobs in the private sector pay five to seven times that. This makes it appear that the British government does not take cybersecurity seriously.”
The ministry tries to justify itself in a statement that is available to several media. “The salary must be fair and offer taxpayers added value,” said a spokesman there. “The enhanced compensation package for the post also includes generous pension entitlements, expenses and other benefits.” Whether that will be enough to attract real talent remains to be seen. Applications are open until April 16th.
Sources: Job Posting, Telegraph, The Stack, Twitter
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