Why diversity of thought matters in cybersecurity


The cybersecurity industry has long struggled with gender disparity. And while the number of women in cybersecurity is growing, the gap remains, just as the industry as a whole is facing a severe talent shortage.

According to the 2019 (ISC)2 “Women in Cybersecurity Report,” women comprise 24 percent of the industry. This is compared to the 10 percent that was estimated in 2015 by a Frost & Sullivan report co-sponsored by (ISC)2. While there seems to be a positive change, we should put things into context: women make up 47 percent of the labor force across all sectors in the United States.

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According to Liz Mann, a 25-year industry veteran, one of the challenges is the fact that not as many young women pursue higher education in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) fields in general.

Mann, who is the head of the Life Sciences and Health sectors for Americas Cybersecurity at EY Advisory, said in a recent Infosec podcast that things have changed since the early days of her career. More women are sitting at the table — but the gender gap remains.

“Part of the problem is that there are still so many fewer women in STEM- or STEAM-based programs in college that the number of women coming through with good-quality education in this area is still small,” Mann said. “So the women … come in still as a minority.”

Working through the ranks

On the positive side, there’s a higher percentage of women climbing the ladder in cybersecurity. The 2019 (ISC)2 report noted that more women than men are reaching some of the top management roles, such as chief technology officer (7 percent of women compared to 2 percent of men) and C-level executives (28 percent of women versus 19 percent of (Read more...)

*** This is a Security Bloggers Network syndicated blog from Infosec Resources authored by Rodika Tollefson. Read the original post at: