Microsoft wants to get more women into cybersecurity

(Image credit: Startup Stock Photos / Pexels)

Microsoft has announced new funding to upskill new cybersecurity workers, especially for women, with a focus in some of the most underrepresented countries including across South America and Asia.

Argentina, Chile, Indonesia, and Spain form part of the now 28 countries covered by the Cybersecurity Skills Initiative whose aim is to deliver grants and funding opportunities to nonprofits and other educational establishments to help deliver more training.

With global demand for cybersecurity workers on the rise, and lesser economically developed countries often experiencing higher rates, Microsoft hopes that empowering women will help to close the skill gap.

Women in cybersecurity

Microsoft cited a 2022 story of its own, women make up just one quarter of the cybersecurity workforce.

Though this announcement focuses primarily on women, the company reminds us of its commitment to “historically underrepresented populations.”

The new partnerships will include organizations like Latin America’s WOMCY, Europe’s Women4Cyber, and the UN’s International Telecommunications Union, supporting specifically its Women in Cyber Mentorship Program with a special emphasis on the Middle East, Africa, and Asia.

Global community WiCyS and country-level partnerships in the likes of Poland and Ukraine also form part of the movement.

Microsoft’s announcement also mentions the cybersecurity industry more generally, which is reported to have seen double the growth of other sectors in the past decade. Countries like Australia, Canada, New Zealand, the UK, and the US are all said to be lacking in skills.

The Cybersecurity Skills Initiative now includes the following countries: Argentia, Australia, Belgium, Brazil, Canada, Chile, Colombia, Denmark, France, Germany, India, Indonesia, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Japan, Korea, Mexico, New Zealand, Norway, Poland, Romania, South Africa, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, and the United Kingdom.

To date, Microsoft claims that the Initiative has helped 400,000 people, including great success in India.

Moving forward, Microsoft Philanthropies Corporate VP Kate Behncken calls out for help  and collaboration from governments and both private and educational sectors.

Craig Hale

With several years’ experience freelancing in tech and automotive circles, Craig’s specific interests lie in technology that is designed to better our lives, including AI and ML, productivity aids, and smart fitness. He is also passionate about cars and the decarbonisation of personal transportation. As an avid bargain-hunter, you can be sure that any deal Craig finds is top value!