IT Job Sector Looks Promising

Dice News RoundupDICE NEWS ROUNDUP:

App Marketplaces Create Lots of Jobs: The demand for smartphone and social networking applications has created 466,000 jobs in the U.S. since 2007, according to an analysis released by technology trade group TechNet. That estimate includes 311,000 jobs based at companies that actually make the apps and another 155,000 created by a ripple effect across the economy. The study goes on to say that this boom is still in its infancy, with a hungry market of 845 million people eager to try more tools. One example: Zynga, creator of FarmVille and Words with Friends, has 2,800 employees and has leased office space to accommodate thousands more. Fox News

IT Employment Reaches an All-Time High: With 13,300 jobs added in January, IT employment reached an all-time high, calculated at 4,107,700, according to TechServe Alliance, a collaboration of IT services firms, clients, consultants, and suppliers. The previous high, of 4,088,600, was hit in September 2008. On an annual basis, IT employment grew by 3.4 percent in 2011. “I am thrilled that IT employment has surpassed its previous all-time high—an encouraging sign not only for the IT services industry, but the economy at-large,” said Mark Roberts, CEO of TechServe Alliance. PR Newswire

The Feds Also See IT Job Growth: Further proof that the IT sector is enjoying relatively healthy employment: the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics has found that companies providing computer systems design and other services, added 1,700 jobs in January, bringing total employment to 1.6 million. Management and technical consulting services, meanwhile, added 3,000 jobs to 1.1 million. Unemployment in the tech sector fell to 3.8 percent in January after hovering around 4 percent for the last several months. That certainly beats the overall U.S. unemployment rate of 8.3 percent.  TheStreet.com

IT Worker Confidence Is Back: The IT Employee Confidence Index, a measure of overall confidence among U.S. technology workers, showed a positive uptick in confidence from 47.3 to 52.0 in the fourth quarter of 2011, according to a survey conducted by Harris Interactive on behalf of Technisource. The increase in confidence was led by a perception of more jobs being available and an increased ability to get those new jobs (as current stats show). Mirroring this increase in confidence is a decreased belief that IT pros will lose their jobs within the next 12 months. Technisource

Denial-of-Service Attacks Are on the Rise: The number of distributed denial-of-service attacks are increasing, according to new reports from Prolexic and Arbor Networks, two companies that provide anti-DDoS solutions. During the fourth quarter, Prolexic detected 45 percent more DDoS attacks compared to the similar period of 2010 and more than twice the number of attacks observed during the third quarter of 2011. The average attack bandwidth was 5.2GB per second, 148 percent higher than what it was during the third quarter. Arbor Networks found similar stats. Over 40 percent of its survey respondents said they experienced attacks that exceeded 1GB per second in bandwidth last year, while 13 percent said they were the target of at least one attack that exceeded 10GB per second. The number one motivation for DDoS attacks in 2011 was rooted around political and ideological conflicts, said Roland Dobbins, an Arbor solutions architect for Asia and co-author of the company’s report. Computerworld

Symantec Hack Attack Gets Ugly: A hacker released the source code for antivirus firm Symantec’s pcAnywhere utility after failed e-mail negotiations over a $50,000 payout to the hacker, who calls himself YamaTough, to destroy the code. Things got confusing, however, when both the hacker and Symantec said there had been multiple deceptions going on. Rather than admit to blackmail, the hacker said he always intended to release the code, and Symantec said its offer to pay the hacker off was directed by law enforcement officials. “Symantec was prepared for the code to be posted at some point and has developed and distributed a series of patches since January 23 to protect our users against known vulnerabilities,” said company spokesman Cris Paden. Reuters

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