Tech companies promise free cybersecurity training at White House summit on Tuesday
The goal is to help reduce the approximately 700,000 vacancies in cybersecurity in the United States.
A number of companies pledged to do their part to help ease the shortage of cybersecurity professionals at the White House National Workforce and Education Summit on Tuesday.
The goal of the summit was to “raise the bar for cybersecurity through greater awareness, education and training,” the White House said in a statement. It was also designed as “a call to action – to ensure that all Americans can reap the benefits of the digital realm.”
Among the participating companies was (ISC)², a nonprofit association of certified cybersecurity professionals, which announced the (ISC)² One Million Certified in Cybersecurity program. The program is committed to providing one million people with its entry-level certification exam and training program for free.
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The association noted that research suggests that organizations that focus on recruiting and developing entry-level cybersecurity staff — including those with little or no technical experience — are accelerating the hands-on training that the next generation of professionals have. needs to start a successful career in cybersecurity.
Those who earn the (ISC)² Certified in Cybersecurity certification will demonstrate to employers that they have the basic knowledge, skills and abilities needed for an entry-level cybersecurity position, the association said.
“We support the goals of the Biden administration, the U.S. National Director of Cybersecurity, and administrations around the world focused on this critical issue,” Clar Rosso, CEO of (ISC)², said in a statement. “We are proud to announce this initiative alongside so many others who share a strong commitment to addressing the challenges of our cybersecurity workforce and we look forward to creating the public-private partnerships necessary to reach our goal of one million. certified in cybersecurity.”
(ISC)² will open registration from September. Qualified individuals will receive a free exam as well as access to the online Self-Study Course (ISC)² Certified in Cybersecurity. The course provides an examination of the topic published in the Cybersecurity Certification Exam Blueprint, which covers the security concepts on which certification candidates will be assessed, including:
- Principles of security
- Concepts of business continuity, disaster recovery and incident response
- Access control concepts
- internet security
- Security operations
University students, recent graduates, retrainers and other professionals wishing to broaden their skills and opportunities are encouraged to participate, especially those employed or seeking employment within small and medium enterprises.
(ISC)² said it will work closely with new and existing partner organizations to reach historically underrepresented populations and encourage greater diversity within the cybersecurity community. The association has pledged that half of the expanded commitment – 500,000 course and exam enrollments – will be directed to students at historically black colleges and universities, minority-serving institutions, tribal organizations and women’s organizations across the United States and the world.
After passing the exam, candidates will become (ISC)² members and have access to a wide range of professional development resources to help them throughout their careers.
(ISC)² estimates that there are more than 2.7 million global cybersecurity workforce shortages. While the U.S. cybersecurity workforce comprises more than 1.14 million people, according to the association, the federal government estimates the country has more than 700,000 cybersecurity job vacancies.
Other companies announce training initiatives
Also at the summit, Cisco announced its commitment to educate an additional 200,000 students in the United States over the next three years.
The company’s corporate training program, Cisco Networking Academy, partners with 49% of community and technical colleges nationwide and 48 of the nation’s 107 HBCUs, the company said.
“While the cyber workforce deficit poses a short- and long-term threat to our national and economic security, it also represents an opportunity to employ a more diverse and inclusive workforce in jobs with low barriers to entry and substantial earning potential,” Francine Katsoudas, executive vice president and director of people, policy and goals, said in a blog post announcing Cisco’s commitment. “To close this gap and take advantage of the associated employment opportunities, we must ensure that cybersecurity training and education is accessible to broader segments of society who use information technology and communications in our rapidly changing world.”
Fortinet has announced that its information security awareness and training service will be made available free of charge to schools across the United States. The expansion of the company’s free training offerings is part of Fortinet’s commitment to train one million people in cybersecurity by 2026 to significantly reduce the skills gap, the company said.