Cyber security-related deals for Tata Consultancy Services (TCS) have grown by at least 2.5-3X over the last 12 months. The IT services major is now actively ramping up its offerings in this space, planning to add 3,000-3,500 employees for cyber security alone in FY23, a senior official of TCS said.

Last week, the company launched TCS Cyber Defense Suite globally, a 360-degree set of modular cyber security services offered under a platform. This includes all of its standalone services launched over the past two years, such as its SaaS platform offering for automated vulnerability remediation and cyber threat management centre solutions, to name a few.

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Speaking about the growth of the cyber security vertical, Santha Subramoni, Global Head, Cyber Security Services, TCS, told BusinessLine, “We are growing very very steadily and we are one of the fastest growing service lines within TCS. From a pipeline perspective, we have really exploded and there is no other word for it. If you really want to put a number to it, have grown at least 2.5x to 3x in pipeline, that in the last 12 months alone. And it is over all kinds of services, be it part of our Managed Security or large transformation vis-à-vis digital identity, adoption of a platform approach to uplift cyber hygiene or visibility analytics cloud adoption. The growth has been uniform across cyber domains.”

She added, “So for us, it is more about meeting the demand-rich environment, but we don’t want to be getting lost in that. We also know that there is only so much a customer can spend. We also want to give a cost-optimised, automated, sustainable approach to the customer.”

As of now, the cyber security vertical has over 500 clients.

Threat management centres

Amidst the thick of cyber security threats and data breaches in October 2020, TCS had started 10 threat management centres across the world, including in the UK, the US, Spain and India. The goal was to ensure privacy and data protection as per the policies of many governments in different geographies. The move also helped when mobility of TCS’ staff was difficult due to the Covid pandemic and they were able to bank on these threat management centres to provide localised services.

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These centres also helped TCS address talent shortage and provide closer customer proximity-based services. “And these centres gave us the foundation to attract local talent, attract local expertise and provide a feeling of comfort to those customers that were not being serviced by someone far away in India,” Subramoni said.

She added, “From the platform strategy perspective, these threat management centres provided the near sure serviceability. This worked out very well. We have grown these centres by at least 150 per cent, we have over 300 associates working out of these centres and our biggest are in the UK, Ireland, and Mexico.”

Hiring plans

TCS will be adding 3,000-3,500 associates for cyber security alone across experience levels and not necessarily entry level. These estimates may further increase if the target is met mid-year.

Subramoni said, “It is a very conservative estimate. Around 3,500 is what we absolutely want to add, but we believe it may be more. We may plan for some, but we cross that target mid-year. I believe we will finish it (hiring target) mid-year and then we will redo our strategy because it helps to keep that agile rather than plan upfront.”

She added that the talent crunch is too big of a problem to solve so soon, and hopes that TCS’ hiring strategy will help solve that.