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Cyber Security Online Marketplace tackles Australia's security skills gap

David Braue | July 12, 2016
CSO Australia-led portal matches cybersecurity professionals and recent university graduates with employers that want and need their skills

And in the future, when you are looking to fill a vacancy they are a perfect fit for the organisation. It is a classic 'win-win-win'." The ability to provide easy access to the next generation of cybersecurity professionals differentiates the CSOM brand and has been welcomed by university academics such as the head of Deakin's School of IT - who, Verma says, "has been quite supportive of the CSOM brand". "This is something that Deakin management at all levels has been in discussions about," he explains, "to determine how we can collaborate with other parties to put interns into industry placements and give them real-life training from the operational point of view. "It is all about having the conduit and the touchpoint to give a platform for students so they are not only going through the teaching process but also learning and getting real-life experience."

Deakin, along with other CSOM endorsing organisations including the University of Technology Sydney and Macquarie University, has actively supported CSOM as an innovative way of helping cybersecurity professionals tap into the fast-growing opportunities within Australia's evolving IT market.

"CSOM is quite a mature platform that builds on CSO Australia's established reach to different organisations and forums," Verma says. "Partnering with CSOM puts the university in a position where we don't have to start anything from scratch. This is a tool that can be pulled into business-as-usual processes to be used within Deakin on a day-to-day basis." Personnel and skills issues remain bugbears for CIOs but, with an election looming and Australia's cybersecurity future on the line, bodies such as the Australian Computer Society are warning that something has to be done around IT skills - and that it can't wait any longer.

Recognising the growing pinch, a range of organisations have moved to stake their claim on Australia's cybersecurity talent by establishing security-focused centres of excellence, with the likes of NEC Australia and Raytheon recently joining investments by the likes of NBN Co, BAE Systems Applied Intelligence, the Victorian government and the federal government's far-reachingCyber Security Strategy predicated on attracting hundreds of cybersecurity specialists.

The paucity of local skills has been driving companies such as Tabcorp to look overseas for talent, even as new technologies such as the Internet of Things (IoT) leave IT-security executives unprepared and employment-site indicators suggest that interest in tech jobs from job seekers continues to increase - especially in Sydney and Melbourne.

As a growing number of students and skilled cybersecurity professionals register with CSOM, the importance of the portal will grow and employers will benefit from easy access to the crème de la crème of Australia's cybersecurity market. In the long term, this will pay off with easier resolution of cybersecurity issues and better ongoing access to the changing security skills that every organisation needs. "All organisations are looking for the right candidates for any piece of work," says Deakin University's Verma, "and within my role I often require different skill sets at different points in time. In the long term the traditional model of going to recruitment agencies to find the right people will be gone; CSOM makes it easier to drill down into a specific skill set that I'm looking for, and quickly identify the right people."

Source: CSO Australia


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