Accelerate Training To Strengthen New Cyber-Resilient Organization
Taavi Must, the Founder and CEO at RangeForce discusses the greatest challenges facing our cyber defenses today and provides solutions to the cybersecurity skills gap.
A few years ago, my company contributed our cloud training program for the U.K. contest known as the Cyber Security Challenge UK. The virtual, simulated challenges included "cybersieges," in which the attacks are carried out by attack bots, while the defense is organized into teams charged with working together to gain hands-on experience coping with real-life attack scenarios that are ripped daily from the headlines. Generally, the exercises are viewed as being quite difficult, even by highly experienced professionals in security operations, application security and forensic investigations. Sometimes, we even have to make them easier.
At that time, any age competitor — including professionals — could enter the challenge. The level of overall talent was impressive, but the results were a bit shocking: The top 10 performers were all under 16 years old.
The juxtaposition between the abilities of adults and young people probably shouldn't be so shocking. There have been plenty of studies over the years showing how youth understand computersbetter than adults, learn better by carrying outhands-on activitiesand are motivated by gamification. For companies desperately seeking to hire the best, most highly-certified cybersecurity professionals in the face of theongoing skills gap, this raises a pointed question: Should they?
Global IT compensation is thehighest it has ever been, according to the Global Knowledge 2019 IT Skills and Salary Report. With new security threats emerging almost daily, we know that skills can quickly become out of date. Wouldn't we be better off hiring young people without skills or recruit recent grads and train them up?