It wasn’t so long ago that Immersive Labs was a small team in a shipping container in Bristol.
We were the classic start-up, fuelled by a belief we could change an outdated approach to cyber skills – a smart team with no small amount of anxiety and hard work.
There are several waypoints that help push any high-growth tech company through the classic rollercoaster ride, all the way from landing the first few big customers to successful fundraising rounds.
This weekend was one of them. Featuring in Tech Track’s 10 Ones to Watch in the 20th anniversary Sunday Times Sage Tech Track 100 is validation of how far we’ve come.
It’s particularly pleasing not just because it underlines our trajectory as a company, but because it shows that attitudes to skills development in our sector are changing.
When we set out on this journey, it was with a belief that the human element of cybersecurity was overlooked. This manifested as security teams whose capabilities lagged those of attackers due to stagnated innovation in skills development.
It would be over-reaching to say this has changed completely or that we alone have changed this perception, but hopefully this accolade underlines a direction of travel for the industry.
Organizations are starting to truly value human cyber readiness, putting it on a par with the value they see in technological countermeasures to hit metrics such as increased resilience and reduced risk.
The mindset is shifting towards viewing members of the security team as an asset that must be continually measured and improved, much like the attack surface has been seen for years. This is crucial because human cyber capabilities are as complex as they are dynamic. Skills decay quickly as they are outpaced by technology and adversaries.
Human cyber skills cannot be taught in the same way as traditional organizational skills; the best cyber talent is curious, creative, and definitely doesn’t flourish with structure. Understanding and catering for this unique mentality is something our industry has historically struggled with.
Because of this, accolades are important to us as a team. We are, one and all, trying to change the way cybersecurity sees human capabilities – and independent recognition is a sign we’re succeeding.
So for every developer who has sweated to meet a deadline, researcher who has toiled to get a lab out fast, and the hundreds of other people who make Immersive Labs tick, thank you for your hard work. We are definitely on the right track.