The Next Generation of Cyber Security
It is no surprise that there is an ever-increasing requirement for more Cyber Security professionals globally, as we continue to embrace the rapid movement of improving technology, and as cyber-attackers become progressively persistent. Yet, with an already stretched cyber talent pool, the up and coming generation of Cyber Security professionals must be inspired to step forward to ensure a secure future.
As Cyber Security unemployment rates hit 0% throughout 2016 and with an average employment shortfall of around 1.5 million skilled professionals estimated by 2020, it is clear that something must be done to protect the globe’s critical systems from malicious hackers and defend against potentially devastating cyber-crime which affects us all.
This is where the need for a next generation of cyber talent comes in to play. Although robust security strategies can be put in place, it is questionable whether these strategies can ever be fully relied upon to create a totally secure future in the midst of such vast skills shortages.
Perhaps Cyber Security needs to be increasingly shouted about as an exciting and rewarding career, with the hope to push the message out there and inspire the next wave of much-needed talent? After all, the profession gives those with a penchant for I.T an outlet to refine their passions and often offers generous financial rewards.
2016’s Talent Initiatives
As we’ve entered the New Year, now seems the appropriate time to reflect upon how 2016 saw a wave of new initiatives proposed, looking to inspire the next generation of professionals.
You may be aware that in November last year, the UK Government proposed to pump £1.9 billion into cyber strategies, with one of the key aims of this funding being to provide the UK with the next generation of Cyber Security. This is of course, a step in the right direction.
Fundamentally, education and awareness is vital towards inspiring a generation. One of the most notable initiatives announced at the end of 2016 was the Government’s plans to open a successful Cyber Security college at the home of historic UK Site; Bletchley Park. Schemes such as this should prove beneficial in emphasising that Cyber Security is an exciting career possibility, whilst training the next generation of professional talent.
Throughout the past year, we have also seen a rise in the importance of learning to code within the Primary School Curriculum, as well as a rise in toys targeted at teaching children how to code.
Another asset of 2016’s cyber awareness also worth mentioning is the hit Penguin book release; The GCHQ Puzzle Book. Although this may only seem minor, popular releases such as this are essential towards spreading the Cyber Security word among younger generations.
As the need for Cyber Security professionals becomes increasingly pressing, a new generation of talent must step forward. In relation to initiatives to inspire new talent, 2016 took many steps in the right direction (and of course, I’ve only mentioned a handful). However, it seems as though a lot still needs to be done to bridge the predicted 1.5 million talent shortfall over the next few years.
Daniel Finkelstein - Cyber Security Consultant - Thatcher MCS - https://www.thatchermcs.com/