Corporations and governments are struggling to fill one million cybersecurity job openings in 2016. There’s a severe cyber labor shortage, and training the world’s young women for careers in security may help solve the problem.
Women make up roughly 50% of the world’s population (including 50% of the U.S. population) and yet they represent only 11% of the cybersecurity workforce.
Getting more women involved in a technical field begins at the high school level. Teachers, guidance counselors, and parents need to help teenage girls understand what cybersecurity can mean for them.
A career in cybersecurity can mean long term job stability, good pay, career growth, and an opportunity to serve and protect others. Teenagers often think ‘hot’ and ‘cool’ as well.
Here’s 5 cool women — and role models — in cybersecurity. Call them cybergrrls and hopefully the high-schoolers will pay attention.
Dr. Anita D’Amico is a human factors psychologist turned cybersecurity expert. She headed up Northrop Grumman NOC -0.56%’s first Information Warfare team and is currently the CEO at CodeDx, a hot cybersecurity startup in New York.
MaryAnn Davidson is the chief security officer (CSO) at Oracle Corporation. She helps the world’s largest enterprise software company to build secure products. MaryAnn is a well known cybersecurity leader, speaker and blogger.
Deborah Frincke, PhD is the research director at the NSA/CSS – National Security Agency, Central Security Service, which provides cryptography support to the U.S. military. Deborah was a long term member on the editorial boards for the Journal of Computer Security and the International Journal of Computer Networks.
Lisa Foreman-Jiggets is founder and CEO at the Women’s Society of Cyberjutsu, a non-profit that helps women succeed in the cybersecurity field. Over the past ten years Lisa held several IT security positions at U.S. government agencies — with a focus on information assurance and penetration testing.
Jennifer Henley spent more than ten years working in corporate IT and security for companies that included eBay EBAY -1.03% and PayPal before she landed what may be the coolest job in cyber — her current position as director of security at Facebook.
There’s many more women in cyber including coders, marketers, professors, forensics experts, IT security pros, sales executives, and other positions.
Getting more young women interested in cybersecurity will help move the needle on women in cyber closer to the 50% mark — where it belongs.
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