Japan Crypto Exchanges Facing Lack of Software Engineers

Companies are willing to pay higher salaries for anyone who can do more than just basic skills. The shortage is high and is exposing exchanges to hacking threats.

Many companies in the cryptocurrencies market in Japan are in search of cybersecurity experts and specialists in the blockchain. This comes even as they faced the threat of hacking and pressing by regulators in the market to tighten security.

The skills in demand are a wide range, from designers of user-friendly interfaces to writing code that helps withdrawals of digital coins and people needed to optimize on security needed to protect customers.

First, the Financial Services Agency tightened their push to require tighter security after Coincheck hack in January. Coincheck lost $530 million in digital money. At the same time, Coincheck complained that the hack was successful partly because it did not have software engineers to deal with the problem.

The company said it was unable to get people with enough skills to deal with security gaps no matter how hard it tried. They said they were aware that they did not have enough people working on internal checks, management, and system risk.

Chief executive Koichiro Wada said,

“We strived to expand using headhunters and agencies, but ended up in this situation.”

For now, the supply is unable to keep with demand. This is despite the fact that exchanges are willing to pay for these skills. Base pay is up 20 to 30 percent from last year according to two recruiters and many exchanges are increasing pay to hunt engineers from other businesses. However, companies are looking for people who can do more than just basic tasks but who can create architecture.

Japan was in short of more than 15,000 workers in big data and artificial intelligence according to the country’s Ministry of Economy, Trade, and Industry. These depend on software engineers. Also, the shortfall is expected to rise to 50,000 by 2020.

Exposure to more hacks

Japan has a total of 32 exchanges. Additionally, more than 100 companies approached regulators for licensing according to Financial Services Agency.

Thus, the lack of experts to seal security gaps in crypto exchanges exposes them to more hacks. Additionally, it could mean that the companies do not successfully compete globally in the crypto economy. This could compromise on their ability to survive as the sector grows and expands rapidly said Alexander Jenner according to a headhunter at Computer Futures in Tokyo.

Is there lack of skills in crypto and blockchain around the world or just in Japan? Share with us on Twitter and Telegram.

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David Kariuki is a journalist who has a wide range of experience reporting about modern technology solutions including cryptocurrencies. A graduate of Kenya's Moi University, he also writes for Hypergrid Business, Cryptomorrow, and Cleanleap, and has previously worked for Resources Quarterly and Construction Review magazines.

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