UK Investing £20M to Find the Next Cyber Security Stars
Ron Perillo / 8 months ago
The UK government is launching a new initiative called the Cyber Discovery programme. With a budget of £20M, it aims to get 15 to 18-year-old interested in cyber-security. This is in response to a looming skills gap in the UK that could handle potential threats.
This is more significant now more than ever. In light of the recent attack on parliament. Plus, various states worldwide are shoring up their hacker stable for cyber warfare. In fact, it is comparable to the ramping up of nuclear armaments in the 80’s during the cold war.
An industry estimate puts the number of unfilled security positions to reach 3 million by 2021. Leaving these positions open makes the UK extremely vulnerable.
How to Join the Cyber Discovery Programme
Interested youth require enrollment via an online assessment form. Those who get the highest marks move to go through a comprehensive cyber-security curriculum involving digital forensics, cryptography, programming and hacking ethics. The programme actually involves role-playing and real-world technical challenges. Plus, online and face-to-face challenges as well. Much of the skill sets necessary to fill positions require awareness of various roles.
It also seeks to change the negative association with the word hacker. Most young people still see the “hacker” mindset as a detriment to getting employed. However, the opposite is actually true. According to security industry veteran Ian Grover, society needs to change the language around the term. Adding that guidance must be provided to young people to articulate what it means to have a career in security.