Developing the US cybersecurity workforce with CISA
Jen Easterly, United States Director of the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency since 2021, poses for a portrait with Amazon Chief Security Officer Steve Schmidt, ahead of an event on business cyber security initiatives at Amazon on September 29, 2022 in Seattle. Photo by Daniel Berman/Amazon.
October is Cybersecurity Awareness Month, and at Amazon, we believe cybersecurity skills training and workforce development are essential to addressing cybersecurity challenges. According to data from Cyberseek and the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), there are over 700,000 job openings in cybersecurity in the United States, including almost 39,000 in the public sector. As the number of cybersecurity career opportunities continues to increase, it becomes even more important to make sure the public and private sectors work together to develop a diverse workforce to fill open roles. That’s why Amazon is working with the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) to train the cybersecurity workforce of the future.
Leading into Cybersecurity Awareness Month, Amazon hosted CISA director Jen Easterly for a roundtable with leaders across higher education, state and local government, and private industry to discuss ways to develop the cybersecurity workforce through skills training, partnerships between government and industry, and creating pathways to cybersecurity careers.
Jen Easterly, United States Director of the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency since 2021, speaks alongside Amazon Chief Security Officer Steve Schmidt, at an event on business cyber security initiatives at Amazon Sept. 29, 2022 in Seattle. Photo by Daniel Berman/Amazon.
“There is a global need for skilled, diverse workers to meet today’s growing security challenges and opportunities, and addressing this issue requires government and business to partner closely,” said Easterly. “We are excited to work with Amazon in building the next generation of cyber talent and help them enter this vital and rewarding career field.”
Amazon recognizes the important role the US federal government plays in developing the cybersecurity workforce. We applaud the White House’s call to action on cybersecurity education and workforce development at its Summit in July and its efforts to bring together diverse stakeholders, including the private sector, to consider how to tackle this challenge together.
Amazon is committed to helping improve the nation’s cybersecurity posture through offering Cybersecurity Awareness Training at no cost to individuals and businesses around the world and providing complimentary multi-factor authentication (MFA) security keys to eligible Amazon Web Services (AWS) customers. We are also making significant investments to help make it simpler for people to gain the skills they need to grow their careers, including in cybersecurity. Amazon is committing more than $1.2 billion to provide no cost education and skills training opportunities to more than 300,000 of our own employees in the US to help them secure new, high-growth jobs. Amazon is also investing hundreds of millions of dollars to provide no cost cloud computing skills training to 29 million people around the world.
For example, through AWS Skill Builder, we make over 500 courses available at no cost, including more than 40 security-focused courses, ranging from foundational to advanced content. Learners who subscribe to AWS Skill Builder subscriptions can access security-related interactive challenges with AWS Jam, which guides learners through solving real-world problems. Additionally, we invest in educational opportunities such as AWS re:Inforce to provide tactical and strategic lessons on how to keep systems and tools protected, and ways to accelerate the pace of innovation while staying secure. We also invite everyone to expand their knowledge of the cloud with AWS technical content authored by AWS and the AWS community, including technical whitepapers, technical guides, reference material, and reference architecture diagrams.
This year’s Cybersecurity Awareness Month theme is “See yourself in Cyber.” Amazon is helping more people recognize the importance of cybersecurity and the role they can play to promote it. For example, Amazon and the National Cybersecurity Alliance recently launched a new cybersecurity awareness campaign, Protect & Connect. The campaign includes a public service announcement featuring Prime Video actor Michael B. Jordan and actress-producer Tessa Thompson as “internet bodyguards,” as well as a microsite for consumers, protectconnect.com, which includes additional videos addressing topics such as MFA and how to identify and avoid phishing attempts.
Cybersecurity requires cooperation between the public and private sectors, as well as the education community. It also requires a diverse workforce with the technical skills to meet increasing security challenges. Amazon is honored to work with CISA, and we are committed to doing our part to develop the cybersecurity workforce of the future. Visit learnsecurity.amazon.com to take our no cost cybersecurity awareness training, and explore security career opportunities at www.amazon.jobs.
Read more about AWS for cybersecurity:
- Cloud security design considerations for state and local government
- Create a secure and fast DevSecOps pipeline with CircleCI
- Announcing second AWS Top Secret Region, extending support for US government classified missions
- How to accelerate CMMC compliance with the new AWS Compliant Framework
- What you need to know about the Executive Order on Improving the Nation’s Cybersecurity and how AWS can help
- AWS GovCloud (US) or standard? Selecting the right AWS partition
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