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Cybersecurity Leadership Program Works to Decrease Cyber Workforce Shortage

by Jackie Davis

The need for a cyber-ready workforce is becoming even more urgent. Currently, there are over 350,000 unfilled cybersecurity jobs in the United States alone, and that number is expected to increase. In an effort to develop the workforce of the future with a specialty in cybersecurity, The University of Texas at Austin has launched the first Healthcare Cybersecurity Leadership Program.

The McCombs School of Business announced the Privacy and Security Risk Management certificate that helps to address the cyber workforce issue. The program will develop workers that can manage risk in the healthcare system and combat cybersecurity threats.

“The number of data breaches is rapidly increasing across the globe and cybersecurity threats have a major impact on patient safety in healthcare organizations,” said Sri Bharadwaj, chief information security officer at UC Irvine Health and co-director of the program.

This program is a step in the right direction for filling cyber jobs, but education and prevention can start at any level. This month is National Cybersecurity Awareness Month, a good time for educators to learn about cyber trends, threats, and challenges as well as share those findings with their students. From creating strong passwords to online safety and understanding a digital footprint, students can benefit from cybersecurity lessons – and just maybe, they’ll become interested in the field.

“Attracting and retaining cybersecurity talent is a major challenge in all industry sectors,” said Greg Garcia, executive director of cybersecurity for the Healthcare and Public Sector Coordinating Council, and former assistant secretary for cybersecurity at the U.S. Department of Homeland Security. “This program is the kind of initiative that will develop a pipeline of cybersecurity leaders who will leverage their knowledge and capabilities to strengthen the cybersecurity and resilience of our nation’s healthcare systems.”

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