Paul Healy, Skillnet Ireland; Sean Kyne, Minister of State for Digital Development at the Department of Communications; and Carmel Somers, IBM

Thousands of companies join cybersecurity skills initiative

Paul Healy, Skillnet Ireland; Sean Kyne, Minister of State for Digital Development at the Department of Communications; and Carmel Somers, IBM

3 October 2018

The Cybersecurity Skills Initiative (CSI), designed to address the growing skills deficit in Ireland, was today launched at the Cyber Security Skills conference in Dublin’s IMI.

Designed to address the growing volume of cyber-attacks, the initiative will promote security best practices and encourage security technology adoption.

“Specifically, the initiative will provide cross and upskilling opportunities for IT operatives across all sectors to a recognised standard, allowing them to act as cyber security officers for their organisations, thereby raising the general level of protection across the country,” said Technology Ireland ICT Skillnet.

The initiative contains a comprehensive plan to train 5,000 people in 4,000 companies in cyber security skills to tackle the issue over the next three years.

According to ICT Skillnet, the initiative promotes five key objectives described as “The Road to Excellence” for Ireland in the cyber security sphere, tackling; Cyber security Skills Pathway, Organic Skills Growth, Cyber security as a Business Issue, Attracting Young People and Continuous Professional Development.

The conference was opened and address by Minister of State at the Department of Communications, Climate Action and Environment Seán Kyne TD.

“The rapid pace of growth in digitisation in every sector and all facets of society brings increasing levels and sophistication of cyber crime,” said the minister.

“For Ireland which has established itself as an attractive location for digital business this presents both a risk and an opportunity to take the lead as a centre of excellence in cybersecurity. I welcome this new Cybersecurity Skills Initiative that will provide a solution to close the growing skills gap in this area.”

“Given the ever-escalating number of cyber threats and the serious risks these pose right across our economy,” said Paul Healy, chief executive, Skillnet Ireland, “we understood the strategic significance of CSI and we were pleased to provide funding to Technology Ireland to develop the initiative.

“CSI is a great example of what can be achieved by enabling industry and practitioners to take the lead in determining both the problems and the solutions. Through CSI, Skillnet Ireland and Technology Ireland ICT Skillnet have facilitated a multi-disciplinary response that has resulted in employers, employees, Government agencies and other key stakeholders coming together to address this complex and urgent challenge.”

“There is a growing shortage of skilled cyber security personnel to protect against and respond to security breaches,” said Carmel Somers, talent manager, IBM and chair of the Cybersecurity Skills Initiative, “and the Cybersecurity Skills Initiative contains a comprehensive plan to train people in cyber security skills and help companies to tackle these cybersecurity skills issues.”


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