CyberShikshaa was launched by Microsoft and DSCI in 2018 and is said to have trained 1100 women and employed more than 800 women through multiple training batches.
Microsoft on Thursday, October 27, announced the expansion of its CyberShikshaa programme in association with the Data Security Council of India (DSCI), Tata STRIVE, and ICT Academy.
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During a press conference, Microsoft said in the next three years, the programme aspires to provide technical skills to 45,000 women and underserved youth for careers in cybersecurity and also offer internships or job opportunities for 10,000 learners.
CyberShikshaa was launched by Microsoft and DSCI in 2018 and is said to have trained 1,100 women and employed more than 800 women through multiple training batches. “More than 5,000 underserved youth have also been trained in Cybersecurity Beginners modules. CyberShikshaa for Educators with ICT Academy, the latest addition to the CyberShikshaa portfolio launched in June 2022 for providing cybersecurity training to 400 faculty members, will help build cybersecurity careers for 6,000 underserved students across 100 rural technical institutions and facilitate job opportunities for over 1,500 students,” the company added.
In its fifth year, CyberShikshaa will reportedly focus on scaling the programme, leveraging industry partnerships, and conducting specialised training for careers in the banking, financial services, and insurance (BFSI) industry.
Microsoft is also planning to expand its reach into semi-urban and rural locations of the country, where the programme will offer AI/ML (artificial intelligence/machine learning) training for cybersecurity product development and enable cybersecurity certifications through an enhanced Cybersecurity Beginners programme named ‘Ready4Cybersecurity.' More than 10,000 rural underserved youth will be enabled with Ready4Cybersecurity certifications.
Jobs in cybersecurity
By 2025, there will be 3.5 million cybersecurity jobs open globally, representing a 350 percent increase over an eight-year period, according to CyberSecurity Ventures.
In India, cybersecurity jobs are projected to grow by 32 percent by 2028, yet the talent pool falls short by 42 percent. Women represent only about 21 percent of the country’s cybersecurity workforce.
Given the massive talent shortage in a diverse cybersecurity workforce, there is a large untapped opportunity to decrease this deficit by skilling and employing underrepresented groups. With cyber adversaries coming from diverse backgrounds, the defender community must be equally diverse to succeed against them.
According to Microsoft, CyberShikshaa trainings are conducted in more than 100 centres across India, including Andhra Pradesh, Assam, Bihar, Delhi NCR, Gujarat, Karnataka, Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh, Punjab, Rajasthan, Tamil Nadu, Telangana, Uttarakhand, and West Bengal.
Through its extensive network of training institutions, industry associations, non-profits, and government and corporate organisations, CyberShikshaa has reinforced a strong ecosystem of partnerships that are driving sustained efforts in cybersecurity awareness and skilling.
(Edited by : Shoma Bhattacharjee)
First Published: IST