The threat of hacking seems to lurk around every corner, but American universities may not be doing enough to prepare the next generation of cyberdefenders. None of America's top 10 computer science programs -- as ranked by U.S. News & World Report in 2015 -- requires graduates to take even one cybersecurity course, according to a new analysis from security firm CloudPassage. Three of the 10 top-ranked programs don't even offer a single elective cybersecurity course, according to the company's findings. And only one of the top 36 programs, the University of Michigan, requires students to take a security course to graduate. The dramatic increase in data breaches in recent years has highlighted the need for cybersecurity skills in the workforce.
Research released this year by Microsoft and the global research firm Frost & Sullivan has found that more than half – 51 percent -- of companies in the Asia Pacific region have either experienced a cybersecurity incident or are not even sure if they have had a cybersecurity incident . They are paying for it in the form of stolen information and money.
After talking about the CISOs role in mergers and acquisitions, it's time we examine the shortage mentioned above, offer short and long-term solutions, and give guidance on how Chief Information Security Officers (CISOs) can be proactive and provide leadership to mitigate the issue. A recent report by Cybersecurity Ventures predicted that the existing cybersecurity workforce gap will increase to 1.5 million job openings by 2019. Some experts predict there will be a global shortage of two million cybersecurity professionals by 2019. Whether it is 1.5 million (July 2016) or two million (March 2017), there is a huge gap in cybersecurity skill sets that is affecting every vertical market. While no one CISO can win this battle, with our combined skills we can collectively mitigate the risk to an acceptable level.