The disparity between male and female cyber security workers is down to poor marketing, as well as how women perceive the industry, says a new report from security certification body Crest.
The research in the report comes from a workshop designed to address the industry’s diversity, attended in February by delegates from the industry and Crest member firms.
The workshop highlighted findings in the latest Global Information Security Workforce Study from information security education and certifications organisation (ISC)2, which showed that women make up just 10% of the workforce.
The number is very low when compared with professional IT workers worldwide – the American Association of University Women found that 26% are women.
Attendees of the workshop were in agreement when it came to pointing out a lack of opportunities for women, but noted that those who do work in cyber security have had a largely positive experience.
Ian Glover, president of Crest, said:
“Increasing the number of women in cyber security is not simply for diversity’s sake, but for the sake of the industry.
“One of our attendees put it best, suggesting that by consistently taking people from the same backgrounds, we will keep coming up with the same approaches and solutions.”
It may take some work to address the gender gap effectively, but in the meantime, firms in the UK would be wise not to shy away from hiring women to fill cyber security jobs. With a potential threat seemingly never too far away, hiring the best person for the job is clearly the best policy.
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