Like every other area of technology, cybersecurity has always suffered from a bit of PR issue in terms of the image that non-technical people have of it – and the people it employs. A perfunctory internet search serves up hundreds of similar images – dark, shadowy, mysterious figures lurking in hoodies. There are lots of padlocks – and very few women.
The UK government founded the CyberFirst campaign back in 2016, which is a broad campaign aiming to introduce young people to the world of cyber security before the crucial age when they start dropping STEM subjects at school. It’s a campaign with noble aims but the most publicity it seems to have generated was when this advert briefly set Twitter on fire last Autumn before being hastily withdrawn by the government.
Teenagers are about as likely to take career advice from the government as they are fashion advice from their parents, so government sponsored campaigns are always going to have a limited impact. The cybersecurity industry is increasingly realising that the lack of diversity across much of the industry is a problem….