Cisco has launched a $10m initiative to develop new cyber security talent through training, mentorship and certification and address future cyber threats and the digital skills gap.
The Global Cybersecurity Scholarship programme will last for two years and will aim to create a pool of talented individuals with proficiency in critical cyber security skills.
The programme and investment are in response to research indicating that there will be a shortage of two million cyber security professionals by 2019, leaving companies, industries and nations open to cyber attack.
Cisco's scholarship programme will offer training, mentorship and certifications aligned to Security Operations Centre Analyst industry jobs, to give participants the skills to protect against current and future cyber attacks.
In effect, Cisco is looking to train people for front-line cyber security work in a Security Operations Centre.
Jeanne Beliveau-Dunn, vice president and general manager at Cisco Services, explained the importance of cyber security in the development of digital skills.
“Cyber security is essential to digital success. Many CEOs across the globe tell us their ability to innovate is hampered by their security concerns in the digital world. This creates a big future demand for skills that don’t exist at scale today,” she said.
“We developed this scholarship programme to help jump-start the development of new talent. This includes the opportunity to diversify the IT security industry by reaching people around the world, including veterans, women and those early in their careers, to inspire them to enter the cyber security profession.
"This is just a start to help us educate, train and reskill the job force to become the security IT professionals needed to address this vast talent shortage.”
Cisco’s direct involvement in the teaching of cyber security skills comes as no surprise given that the company has drawn attention to how the security industry fails to keep pace with the threats posed to internet-connected devices.
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