A Shortage Of Cyber Talent
As National Cybersecurity Awareness month winds down, I wanted to highlight the importance of cybersecurity professionals and how cybersecurity can be a rewarding and in demand career. For years there has been a cybersecurity labor shortage, with the International Information System Security Certification Consortium (ISC2) reporting that despite adding 460,000 workers to the information security workforce in 2022, the gap between talent and demand has increased 26%. Even within the office, 70% of IT professionals believe there aren’t enough cybersecurity specialists to support their organization. Majority of those workers also believe there is a shortage because of an inability to find qualified talent.
This issue has become so pervasive the White House established a National Cyber Workforce and Education Strategy to educate Americans on information security and fill cyber job vacancies. The initiative promises to “Promote the pursuit of foundational cyber skills and cyber careers; and to foster global progression of foundational cyber skills.” They are partnering with organizations such as National Science Foundation, Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency, and Google to provide resources like scholarships, speaking engagements, and online certificates for cybersecurity education.
What Does a Cybersecurity Professional Do?
Contrary to popular belief, cybersecurity isn’t just “hacking”, there’s a myriad of specialties and roles ranging from engineering to consulting, here’s a look at what some of the members on our team do at Fordham Information Security & Assurance.
Marc Herzog, IT Security Engineer: Marc monitors various security concerns throughout the university and frequently collaborates with other IT teams to address vulnerabilities. He is also part of the Fordham Incident Response Team for when the university suffers a cyber attack or breach. His day to day consists of maintaining solutions for user security awareness and compliance monitoring. Previously, Marc attended the NYU School of Professional Studies for a certificate in cybersecurity and owned his own cybersecurity consulting business.
Matthew Tams, Director of Application and System Security: Mathew oversees all aspects of application and system security, including web application firewalls, privilege access management, Multi-Factor Authentication, and dynamic application security testing. He also serves as an application security advisor for identity and access management implementation and is a member of the Fordham Incident Response Team. Before assuming this position, Mathew served as the director of Database Administration at Fordham managing databases for the Banner and PowerFAIDS. His earlier experience includes database administration at St. John’s University, where he currently serves as an adjunct professor. He holds two master’s degrees, one in Economics and another in Computer Applications, from Kerala University, India.
Shannon Ortiz, Senior Director of IT Security and Assurance: Shannon is the senior director of our program and manages strategies to secure data, intellectual property, and privacy. He oversees the budget commitments and management of all IT security and risk management applications, cloud services, and hardware implementation. Additionally, he manages anti-malware, data loss prevention, and endpoint security software. Shannon has a masters in cybersecurity from Fordham University and is also an adjunct professor at Fordham and NYU. Prior to this role, Shannon has experience in running micro labs, network engineering, and system services, in addition to several management roles.
Check out Fordham’s MS in Cybersecurity Program
With all the demand for cybersecurity professionals it may be a good time to look into Fordham University’s Master’s in Cybersecurity program. For undergraduate students, Fordham offers a minor in cybersecurity as well as an accelerated masters (4+1) program. The program focuses on both technical solutions to cyber threats as well as the ethical implications of cybersecurity policy, forming a well rounded workforce. The program offers courses in network, cloud, and blockchain security and was designated as a Center for Excellence in Cybersecurity by Homeland Security and the NSA.
Recently, the center was awarded a 4.1 million dollar grant from the federal government to expand its Scholarship for Service (SFS) program to Fordham. The program provides full tuition scholarships to undergraduate and graduate students looking to pursue a degree in cybersecurity. The scholarship will also cover living and professional development expenses in exchange for working as a cybersecurity analyst at a federal, state, or tribunal agency.