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Accredited academic institutions now have access to new resources and support from the information and software security body (ISC)2 with the launch of its Global Academic Programme. (ISC)2 is making its educational resources, updated by its members and industry, available to academia to help meet the global demand for more skills in cybersecurity.

(ISC)2 says it seeks to address what it terms the growing gap in availability of qualified cybersecurity professionals that has been tracked since 2004 by the (ISC)2 Global Information Security Workforce Study. The most recent report, in February, offers analysis from Frost & Sullivan into the acute nature of the skills gap, forecasting an annual workforce growth rate of 11.3pc by 2017, and pointing out that 35pc of respondents looking to hire more workers find it difficult to find qualified personnel today.

W Hord Tipton, CISSP, executive director, (ISC)2 said: “We believe it’s critical to recognise and support the role of the academic community in the development of much-needed cybersecurity talent for now and in the future. With the global skills gap in this sector increasingly acknowledged by companies and governments around the world, industry and academia must come together to address this challenge. (ISC)2 is in a unique position to offer its educational content, which is regularly updated and vetted by experts, to colleges and universities around the world as part of this collaborative development effort required for our now digitally-dependent society.”

Carsten Maple, Vice Chair of the Council of Professors and Heads of Computing, an association representing computing in UK Higher Education, highlights the need for more security content, saying: “It appears that many Computing graduates are leaving university having studied little in the area of security. There is a varied approach to teaching security, but in a number of institutions there is only one module -approximately 5pc of the total credits in a degree – dedicated to information security in their core 3 year Computer Science degree. Clearly with the growth in cyber attacks there is a need for graduates to be equipped with skills and knowledge of the threats and methods to overcome these. To do this and to give Computing students the best opportunity to succeed, we as an academic community are trying to better engage with industry representatives in fields such as information security.”

The Global Academic Programme, which is being launched as governments seek to improve university curricula as part of their national cybersecurity, offers products and services for colleges and universities. Classroom materials, such as domain-specific modules and practice assessments, faculty handbooks and student textbooks are drawn from the certification CBKs. The programme is open to accredited institutions interested in enhancing cyber content within their security, computing, IT or other relevant course offerings.

“In addition to the resources we have to offer, this programme presents a real opportunity to become part of a global network of academic members interested in establishing a joint framework for delivering essential skills and supporting the growth of a qualified cybersecurity workforce,” says Jo Portillo, Global Academic Programme, (ISC)2.

Academic institutions interested in learning more about the (ISC)2 Global Academic Programme can contact Dr. Jo Portillo, manager, Global Academic Programme, (ISC)2 at academic@isc2.org or make an inquiry via the website: https://www.isc2.org/academic/Default.aspx.


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