Report: Minority Professionals in Cybersecurity Underrepresented in Senior Roles, Paid Less

Kathy Gurchiek By Kathy Gurchiek March 16, 2018
Report: Minority Professionals in Cybersecurity Underrepresented in Senior Roles, Paid Less

Cybersecurity professionals of color earn less than their white counterparts, says a new report.

A male cybersecurity professional of color earns an average salary of $121,000—the same as white women—while white men earn, on average, $124,000. Women of color working in cybersecurity earn $115,000—nearly $10,000 less than white men, according to "Innovation Through Inclusion: The Multicultural Cybersecurity Workforce."

The report also showed that people of color working in leadership roles often hold higher academic degrees than their white peers who occupy similar positions. Employment among cybersecurity professionals who identify as a racial or ethnic minority tends to be concentrated in nonmanagement positions, with fewer minorities occupying leadership roles despite being highly educated. The findings are from the eighth edition of the (ISC)² Global Information Security Workforce Study developed by (ISC)²) and The Center for Cyber Safety and Education in partnership with Frost & Sullivan, a global research and consulting organization in Santa Clara, Calif.

There are measures organizations can take to foster and promote the advancement of minorities in technology, the report said. That includes offering mentorship and training programs, executive leadership programs, and companywide recognition programs and events.

SHRM Online has collected the following articles from other news outlets about the lack of diversity and pay equity for minorities working in technology.

Minority Cybersecurity Pros Earn $7K Less than Average, Even with More Education 

About 32 percent of cybersecurity professionals of color have experienced workplace discrimination, according to a new report from (ISC)².

Despite earning more degrees, minority cybersecurity workers are less likely to hold leadership roles or make the same salary as their Caucasian peers in the field, it found. On average, a cybersecurity professional of color earns $115,000, while the overall U.S. cybersecurity workforce average salary is $122,000. 
(Tech Republic

Diversity in STEM Workforce Varies Widely Across Jobs 

Jobs in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) have relatively high earnings compared with many non-STEM jobs, and the earnings gap persists even after controlling for educational attainment. Among workers with similar education, STEM workers earn significantly more, on average, than non-STEM workers.

Despite the earnings advantage, the gender wage gap is wider in STEM occupations than in non-STEM jobs. This is partially because women are clustered in lower-paying STEM jobs in the health care industry and underrepresented in the more lucrative fields of engineering and computer science.

The pattern is similar for blacks and Hispanics, who also tend to be concentrated in less lucrative STEM jobs, widening the measured earnings disparity. 
(Pew Research Center)   

Minority Cybersecurity Professionals Hold Fewer Leadership Roles

Although minority representation in cybersecurity is higher than the overall U.S. workforce (26 percent versus 21 percent), these professionals are disproportionately in non-management roles, according to a new (ISC)2 report. There's also a pay discrepancy, which significantly affects women of color in cybersecurity careers. To foster diversity in the workplace, 49 percent of minority cybersecurity professionals said mentorship programs are very important. 

[SHRM members-only toolkit: Avoiding Adverse Impact In Employment Practices]

African-Americans in STEM jobs Especially Concerned about Workplace Diversity, Discrimination   

Blacks and Hispanics are underrepresented in science, technology, engineering and math jobs, relative to their presence in the overall U.S. workforce, particularly among workers with a bachelor's degree or higher. Among STEM workers, black workers stand out for their concerns that there is too little attention paid to increasing racial and ethnic diversity at work, their high rates of experience with workplace discrimination, and their beliefs that blacks are not usually met with fair treatment in hiring decisions or in opportunities for promotion and advancement where they work. 
(Pew Research Center)   

Lawsuit: Google Job 'Quotas' Favored Minorities Over White and Asian Men

Google, in seeking to improve its workforce diversity, imposed illegal hiring quotas favoring women, African-Americans and Latinos and discriminating against white and Asian men, a former employee claimed in a lawsuit.

Former Google recruiter Arne Wilberg, who worked in the company's YouTube division, also alleged that the Mountain View, Calif., tech giant systematically discriminated against older engineers in its hiring and sought to purge internal correspondence about its illegal employment practices. 
(Mercury News)  

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