NTT Security, the specialised security company and centre of excellence in security for NTT Group, has launched its inaugural Women in Cybersecurity Awards as part of an initiative to recognise and inspire talented female professionals and newcomers in the cybersecurity industry.
The new awards, developed in partnership with Global Digital Women (GDW), will recognise the voices of women in cybersecurity across Europe and change perceptions of them as well as inspire young women to consider a career in the sector. With women representing 26% of NTT Security workforce in Europe, the project also forms part of NTT Security’s long-term drive to improve upon the gender gap.
Applicants can apply themselves or nominate female experts in the cybersecurity industry. There are two categories: ‘Newcomer’, which celebrates women who have been working in the cybersecurity sector for under 5 years or who have recently completed a cybersecurity-based degree and ‘Professional’ for women who have been managing a cybersecurity team or been involved with the industry for five or more years.
The awards are open for entries from now until 16th August in the DACH region: Germany, Austria and Switzerland, and until 13th September in Northern Europe: UK, Benelux and Nordics. Finalists will be chosen by a panel of independent experts, with the winners announced at Information Security World (ISW), a series of established industry events held by NTT Security in Vienna on 17th September and London on 15th October 2019.
Kai Grunwitz, SVP NTT Security EMEA, says: “For as long as anyone can remember, the industry has suffered from a major gender imbalance problem. When viewed in the context of the global cyber skills shortages, it’s clear we are reaching crisis point.
“With the new Women in Cybersecurity Awards, we have made it our mission to give talented women in our industry the visibility they deserve and thank them for the work they do every day in this field. We also want to encourage more women to make a name for themselves in cybersecurity. There are already a lot more female role models out there today, but there is still a long way to go. We still don’t have enough women working in the industry and recruiters are failing to deliver on diversity promises.”
The latest figures from (ISC)² last year put the global cybersecurity skills shortfall at 2.9m professionals, with women occupying just under a quarter (24%) of roles. This is an improvement on the 11% previously estimated. Furthermore, men still dominate the industry all the way to the top, occupying a large majority (87%) of CISO roles at Fortune 500 firms.
Kai concludes: “Our industry needs to continue pushing for more women in cybersecurity and, while the gender diversity problem won’t change overnight, we hope NTT Security’s new awards will help increase the visibility of the profession among females.”