Will Virginia Step up for Women in Cyber?

by Dr. J. S. Buitron

Delegate Kirk, I have seen on the Washington Post and Virginia news sites that you have a close hold on whether or not the Equal Rights Amendment gets voted on in the Virginia House of Delegates this week. Your lack of action could be holding back the advancement of cybersecurity in our great nation. As of late 2018, (ISC)2 estimated that the United States has 498,000 jobs in cybersecurity that need to be filled (Cision, 2018). There are not enough men to fill all of the job openings. Less than 1/4 of the information security workforce is female. A security industry hiring expert, Deidre Diamond noted, “. . . we can’t manufacture more men” (Security Guy Radio, 2016). In the business of cyber, women are paid less, discriminated against, and they are leaving the cyber workforce faster than they are joining it (Frost & Sullivan, 2017). Several analysts have pointed out that the lack of women in cybersecurity affects national security. The information security workforce needs a varied skillset, a greater variety of viewpoints, and more hands on the problem than currently are available (Slaughter & Weingarten, 2016). Part of the problem is that young girls are put off from pursuing work in cyber (Ross, 2018). Your refusal to give equal rights for women a vote in Virginia and for all of the women of the United States directly affects the future of cybersecurity and the safety and security of the United States of America. Reconsider your stance against the Equal Rights Amendment. Give the women of this country a fair chance at protecting our national interests in cybersecurity. Our nation is counting on you. Please move the Virginia House of Delegates to vote on ERA.

Thank you, Dr. J. S. Buitron, DCS Doctorate of Computer Science in Information Assurance\Cybersecurity Masters of Science in Information Assurance, Valedictorian MSIA, CISSP, MCSE ITIL v3, v2, Network+ IBM Power Systems certified for AIX and Linux

References

Cision PR Newswire. (2018). (ISC)2 Report finds cybersecurity workforce gap has increased to more than 2.9 million globally. Retrieved from https://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/isc2-report-finds-cybersecurity-workforce-gap-has-increased-to-more-than-2-9-million-globally-300732525.html Frost & Sullivan. (2017).

The 2017 global information security workforce study: Women in cybersecurity. Retrieved from https://iamcybersafe.org/wp-content/uploads/ 2017/03/WomensReport.pdf

Ross, A. (2018). Are women better suited to a career in the cyber security industry? Retrieved from https://www.information-age.com/women-cyber-security-123473080/

Security Guy Radio. (2016, September 27). #CyberSN with Deidre Diamond at #BlackHat 2016 [Video File]. Retrieved from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Mt9ZUosR2sI

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