Non-Profit Aims to Bring More Military Vets into Cyber Roles

A new tech non-profit launches this week in London designed to encourage more leavers from the Armed Forces to take up careers in cybersecurity and IT.

TechVets launches on March 8 and will be doing so with a partnership announcement with Immersive Labs which will help it provide free cybersecurity training for members.

According to the organization, around 15,000 personnel leave military service each year, but the majority find careers in manufacturing (13%), transportation (12%) and defense administration (12%).

Just 4% work in tech, which is a missed opportunity, according to TechVets.

The non-profit is being backed by General Sir Richard Barrons, former commander of Joint Forces Command and one of six chiefs-of-staff leading the UK Armed Forces until 2016.

Its founders include Peter Connolly, a retired major in the British army who completed tours of Afghanistan, Iraq, Northern Ireland and India, and is now CEO and founder of consultancy Toro Risk Solutions.

Also on board is Euan Crawford, CEO of advisory firm Cepient and a former Army Reserve, who served in Iraq.

“We are looking forward to working closely with the UK government and defence, the Career Transition Partnership, military charities, and industry champions, in order to harness the unrealized human potential within veterans,” he said, according to TechCrunch.

“We are totally committed to supporting the recruitment and education of veterans and service leavers, and to helping veterans to leverage their transferable skills and succeed in tech.”

The launch event has an impressive list of speakers slated, including representatives from the National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC), Google, IBM and Amazon.

Its help is certainly needed in reducing the endemic skills shortages blighting the cybersecurity industry. The UK is predicted to be heading for a “skills cliff edge” because new recruits aren’t coming through to replace retirees, according to the Global Information Security Workforce Study (GISWS).

The global shortfall is predicted to reach 1.8m positions by 2022.

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