Ward off the threats

Given the digital world we are living in, there is a huge potential to learn, research and grow in the area of cybersecurity

June 26, 2021 01:27 pm | Updated 01:27 pm IST

Are you sure you’re safe?

Are you sure you’re safe?

With the pandemic causing a shift to work from home and online education, there has also been a move from highly secure in-premise networks to home Wi-Fi and personal devices. This has led to an increased need for comprehensive cybersecurity solutions. The risks associated with ransomware, IoT algorithm manipulation, phishing and DDos among others are often heightened due to skill gap in the domain and lack of knowledge.

Today, India is staring at an expected 3.5 million new vacancies in the cybersecurity space in 2021 alone. It is, therefore, imperative to recognise the need of cybersecurity education. Additionally, in the years to come, India will face unique challenges and cybersecurity threats, leaving the country with a huge potential to learn, research and grow in this area.

An overview

Cybersecurity is now a field that integrates into various, if not all, sectors. Traditionally, under an M.A. programme, students would study innovative and critical technological tools needed to protect network systems, data et al from information and data theft, hardware/software damage and disruption or misdirection of the services. Today, cybersecurity courses have evolved to include domains such as government and politics, engineering, space security, defence and cybersecurity research among others. These courses are a mix of short-term as well as long-term programmes offering students flexibility in what they choose to learn.

There are interesting courses such as Cyber Politics and Government that integrates the essentials needed in developing strategic planning, management and leadership in the dynamic, ever-challenging and cutting-edge world of big data and cyber threats. It will also equip the students with an understanding of the impact of cyber challenges on societal, governmental, corporate and organisational levels and help them make all-important decisions in risk management, compliance, budget, reputation, policy and strategy. Graduates of such a course become next generation of leaders, educators, executives and policymakers who can bridge the gap between technology and strategic governance and policy.

Variety of issues

With engineering becoming the centre point of all innovation, another interesting course focuses on Information Systems Engineering with a specialised focus on cybersecurity. This provides researchers and professionals a very high level of training in the field of Information Security in Cyberspace. Designed for graduates of Computer Science, Software Engineering, and Communications Systems Engineering, the programme includes a variety of issues, such as network security methods to identify attacks, cryptography, and secure systems development. Students are thus equipped with tools to meet the current market needs that and to a wide range of opportunities for scientific and industry related domains.

There are even short-term programmes that will help learners acquire the skills and knowledge needed to make a difference and ensure our future online generations stay secure. The student gets the perspective of corporate, national and economic security and focuses on the complexity of policy-making and strategy that surrounds cybersecurity, and the complex relationship between cybersecurity and business and governance.

All such programmes ultimately help in tackling the biggest cyber problems faced by our generation as well as the future generations alike — governance in the pandemic world, surge in cyber attacks and dependency on personal networks among others. The future in the space of cybersecurity is evident by the digital world that we are living in.

The writer is the Chair of Planning and Budgeting Committee of the Israeli Council for Higher Education

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