In this, our last post about learnings from cyber awareness month, we focus on developing the next generation of cybersecurity experts and increasing its size. According to a study by the Center for Cyber Safety and Education, within five years there will be a shortage of 1.8 million data security workers. This means companies will find it increasingly difficult to hire and retain qualified employees to protect their data systems. Cyber Awareness Month included programs encouraging students and others to explore jobs in cybersecurity, and emphasized programs such as the National Cyber Collegiate Defense Competition and the U.S. Cyber Challenge.

Putting It Into Practice: It may seem on first blush that companies cannot do much about the coming dearth of cybersecurity experts, but that is not correct. Companies can:

  • Offer internships for students in the cybersecurity field. This will not only give you access to the latest learning in the area, but also create relationships with individuals who could become new and valuable employees down the line. Internships can become an inside track for an employer to secure valuable talent.
  • Support (financially and otherwise) employees who wish to pursue education in the cybersecurity field. It will not only increase morale and employee loyalty, but could also give you access to highly valued skills and knowledge via an already-known and valued employee.