This past year, four hundred new volunteers joined the (ISC)² Foundation’s worldwide initiative, Safe and Secure Online. The program brings top cybersecurity experts into classrooms and community centers throughout the year. Since the program began, nearly 1,400 (ISC)² member volunteers have helped approximately 150,000 children learn how to protect themselves online and become responsible digital citizens. This is done through volunteer training and compelling materials that empower the next generation of Internet users to take charge of their online safety. Nowhere was the Safe and Secure Online program more prominent than on Safer Internet Day in February, where member volunteers presented safety tips to nearly 10,000 children in a single day. "Today, too many children and young people are spending increasing amounts of their lives online, without the benefit of any guidance, as parents and teachers admit they don't understand the risks," explains Enda McGahern, lead Ireland Safe and Secure Online volunteer and member of the (ISC)² Ireland Chapter. "I volunteered for the Safe and Secure Online program because I believe that by giving up a little of my free time, I could make a difference in helping children protect themselves by sharing my knowledge and skills." Thanks to Enda and the hundreds of other Safe and Secure Online volunteers for making 2014 such a success!
This year the (ISC)² Foundation joined efforts with the U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s (DHS) Stop.Think.Connect.™ Campaign. The Campaign’s overarching goal is to help Americans of all ages understand the risks that come with using the Internet and to encourage them to take steps to protect themselves online. This effort is a partnership comprised of federal and state governments, industry, and non-profit organizations, all sharing resources and working towards a common goal. “The (ISC)² Foundation’s partnership with DHS’ Stop.Think.Connect. National Network demonstrates our commitment to proactively educating the public about how to stay safe online and to collaborate with organizations that hold to a similar commitment,” says Elise Yacobellis, Director, Global Development, (ISC)². (ISC)² Foundation volunteers and staff are excited to have the additional support and resources of the DHS’s Stop.Think.Connect.™ Campaign as the Foundation mobilizes for Data Privacy Day on Jan. 28, Safer Internet Day on Feb. 10, and October 2015’s Cybersecurity Awareness Month.
The (ISC)² Foundation is looking forward to unveiling the sixth edition of our Global Information Security Workforce Study (GISWS) in the Spring. The study has become a well-respected industry benchmark referenced by governments, employers, professionals and industry stakeholders for more than a decade. Given the rise of high profile security breaches in globally recognized brands, information security has become a focal point in conversations about the future of business. As the information security industry grows to inhabit more space in company’s budgets, it’s important to have a clearer picture its future. The GISWS aims to provide a clear understanding of pay scales, skills gaps, training requirements, corporate hiring practices, security budgets, career progression, and corporate attitudes toward information security by relying on responses from our 100,000-plus membership. Improvements to the survey this year include the addition of four new information security industry concepts and the enhancement of new areas of interest to the profession such as privacy, Cloud, and big data.
In addition to researching the skills gap that exists in the workforce for qualified information security professionals, the (ISC)² Foundation remains committed to working to close that gap by providing scholarships to prepare future information security professionals for a rewarding career in this important field. We continue to be inspired by the overwhelming number of worthy scholarship applicants and their drive, dedication and determination to the field of information security. The Scholarship Program continued to grow in 2014, awarding 33 scholarships to recipients across the globe. Each scholarship recipient expressed tremendous gratitude for the opportunities awarded to them. One of those inspiring and promising stories comes from Anna Truss, born in Turkmenistan, who said she was honored by the recognition of the Graduate Scholarship award. “I’ve been through a lot of challenges throughout my life to get to where I am now, and getting this scholarship will definitely help me achieve my goals in life. One of my many goals is to receive a Master of Science degree in cybersecurity. This scholarship, for me, is not the end but rather the beginning of a brighter future.” Anna’s story is just one of many, and the (ISC)² Foundation is pleased to be able to provide the opportunity for Anna and others to achieve their goals.Each year the (ISC)² Foundation reevaluates its Scholarship Program for additional opportunities. Among this year’s improvements will be changes in application schedules.Faculty Exam Voucher applicants now will have four application periods to seek opportunities to become certified, thus further exhibiting these cybersecurity experts’ experience and credentials in the field.
The (ISC)² Foundation Women’s Scholarship program will accept applications January 1 through March 31, 2015. Undergraduate and Graduate application periods will open March 1 through June 17. This staggered application period will allow those who applied for the Women’s Scholarship to be recommended for consideration of a Graduate or Undergraduate Scholarship if not awarded in the Women’s category. The new schedule will also provide Graduate and Undergraduate applicants with additional time to submit their final Spring semester grades. All of the (ISC)² Foundation’s 2014 accomplishments would not have been possible without the generous support we received from our partners, donors and volunteers. Join them in keeping your community safe and secure by becoming a volunteer, or donate today and help us start the New Year right for children, and seniors, everywhere. The (ISC)² Foundation wishes each of you a very happy New Year. Thank you, and we look forward to working with you – and for you – in the coming 12 months.
(ISC)² Press Release - (ISC)² Announces U.S. Federal Government Findings of World’s Largest Information Security Workforce Study
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Globb Security - See how the (ISC)² Foundation is helping to protect children online in a video interview with Foundation Director Julie Peeler at the RSA Conference.
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CIO Review Magazine - (ISC)² Foundation Director Julie Peeler says the growing cloud adoption rate is increasing demand for security pros, based on data from the 2015 GISWS, in CIO Review magazine.
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