The WiS group’s objective is to raise the profile of women in the security industry and encourage more to join the profession.
The (ISC)² 2013 Global Information Security Workforce (GISWS) study shows that the information security profession is heavily dominated by males, with females making up only 7% of the UK workforce.
The program is aimed both at new entrants to the profession and experienced professionals. New entrants will benefit from a more in-depth understanding of the various specializations within information security as they make their career choices, while women already working in IT will be encouraged to consider security as a career option.
The WiS group consists of experienced practitioners in the field, both female and male, who now have the opportunity to act as mentors or mentees to further the cause of the group and the industry through this mentoring scheme.
“Our members bring invaluable information security experience from across industries,” said Emili Evripidou, coordinator of the WiS group and information security consultant at Ernst & Young. “This mentoring scheme will support women with all levels of experience by helping them to evaluate their options, explore areas of interest and identify new career paths to meet their professional and personal goals.”
The official launch of the inititive is scheduled for an event held July 2 at an invitation-only WiS group event hosted by Ernst & Young at the company’s offices in central London.
Attendees to the event will also benefit from speeches from industry figureheads such as Liz Bingham, managing people partner, Ernst & Young, and Vicki Gavin, head of business continuity and information security for The Economist Group.
Richard Nealon, a member of the (ISC)² Board of Directors, commented on the gender gap in the industry, saying that “the current skewed gender bias against women must change. The information security profession has a lot to offer women in terms of job satisfaction, healthy salaries and career progression. Likewise, women in the workplace bring a different set of skills and strengths that the industry across the board can benefit from. As a profession, we must correct this imbalance.”
(ISC)² is working on bolstering the IT security workforce across the board, including last week’s announcement that it was kicking off a scholarship program for US veterans interested in training for the field.