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The Global Shortage of Cybersecurity Talent

July 26, 2021 | Campus News
The Global Shortage of Cybersecurity Talent

To protect our data, privacy and keep digital society safe from new threats, we count on cyber experts or cybersecurity specialists – unsung heroes who are our digital frontliners.

As Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin said at the virtual Cyber Defence and Security Exhibition and Conference 2021: “We cannot escape anymore from emphasising the elements of cybersecurity in each and every initiative.”

Within Malaysia, there is a high number of cybersecurity intrusions and fraud reported to the police which has resulted in losses amounting to millions.

Global demand for cybersecurity talent

According to the World Economic Forum (WEF) report 2021, there is a global gap of over three million cybersecurity workforce, with two million in the APAC region alone.

Cisco, Symantec, Cybersecurity Ventures, ISACA and Intel have all expressed concerns on global talent shortage, as highlighted in the Cybersecurity Jobs Report 2018-2021 by Cybersecurity Ventures.

Together with its industry partners especially MDEC, the Asia Pacific University of Technology and Innovation (APU) aims to respond to the local and global talent demand.

“Cybersecurity is one of the central pillars of the digital economy, recording more than twice the overall ICT spending growth in the country over the next five years, according to an IDC report.  With the recently-launched Malaysia Cyber Security Strategy (MCSS) and MyDIGITAL, 20,000 cybersecurity knowledge workers are needed by 2025 to support the cybersecurity workforce demand from the industry,” said Malaysia Digital Economy Corporation (MDEC) Chief Executive Officer Surina Shukri.

The Global Shortage of Cybersecurity Talent

“MDEC have various initiatives to ensure that the pipeline creating these talents goes unhindered and we strongly encourage youths to take up cybersecurity as a viable and lucrative career option. Together, we can build and enhance our ecosystem and digital economy, championing Malaysia as the Heart of Digital ASEAN.”

Specialised programmes in digital and cybersecurity

As Malaysia’s premier digital tech university, in addition to receiving the Best CyberSecurity Education Excellence Award, APU delivers high quality industry-relevant programmes in the areas of cybersecurity and digital forensic, such as the BSc (Hons) Information Technology with a Specialism in Information Systems Security, BSc (Hons) Computer Science (Cyber Security), BSc (Hons) Computer Science with a specialism in Digital Forensics, and Master of Science in Cyber Security.

These programmes adhere to international curriculum standards and industry requirements and impart real-world cybersecurity practices, producing a successful track record of employable graduates.

Its industry advisory panel consists of experts from the cybersecurity field.

The Global Shortage of Cybersecurity Talent

Cybersecurity Talent Zone (CSTZ) fortifies cybersecurity skills

The nation’s first state-of-the-art infrastructure and sophisticated learning space – CyberSecurity Talent Zone (CSTZ) – incorporates military-grade real-time cybersecurity monitoring systems, research centres and simulation infrastructure.

The full-fledged Cyber Threats Simulation and Response Centre (or Cyber Range) and Security Operations Centre (SOC) stream live monitoring data extracted from a database of cyber-attacks worldwide, providing a platform for hands-on practice on ethical hacking and incident response to nurture security professionals.

Upon completion of 50 hours manning the SOC and successfully completing all activities in an assessment, students get a certificate of completion from APU’s industry partner TecForte.

The amalgamation of qualified academic professionals, industry-relevant curriculum and world-class facilities have produced digital security unsung heroes from APU, who constantly outperform their peers at national and international level competitions.

The Global Shortage of Cybersecurity Talent

Some notable achievements include the Best Cybersecurity Education Provider in Asia (2021, 2020 and 2019), Top University Award in KPMG Cyber Challenge 2018, Champion of the F-Secure Intervarsity Cybersecurity Challenge (2020, 2018, 2017, 2016), Global Champion Ernst & Young Cyber Security Hackathon in 2018 in Hong Kong, Global Cyber Heroes Challenge (2019) and many more.

Graduates of APU’s digital security programmes have become part of the global digital security workforce.

According to the latest Annual Graduate Tracer Study by the Higher Education Ministry, 100% of its graduates have been employed upon graduation.

APU graduates are equipped with abilities to develop related skills and backgrounds such as evaluating design paradigms, languages, algorithms and demonstrating techniques to develop complex software systems and exploiting new technologies and applications.

To find out more about APU's cybersecurity courses and facilities, go to www.apu.edu.my, call 03-8996 1000/1300 888 278 (toll-free) or email [email protected]

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