NCSC Aims To Inspire Young Female Code-Breakers

A competition with a mission to inspire the next generation of cyber security experts opened on Monday 10th December... and it's just for girls. The contest is run by the National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) to encourage 12 and 13-year-old girls to get involved in code-cracking and problem-solving, in the hope they chose computer science for GCSE and go on to do further qualifications in the subject.

The problem is, only 11% of the global cyber workforce are women, something the deputy director of the NCSC Chris Ensor says is "not good enough". He said: "Often we talk about boys, girls, male, female, but ultimately we want people across the spectrum working in this space who will bring different things.

"They might have the same technical skills but they look at things in a different way, approach problems in a different way, they will do teamwork in a different way and that's what brings the magic.

"That's what helps us solve so many different problems."

The concept of the competition is definitely working at the Piggott School in Berkshire. Four girls made up the winning team for 2018, beating 4,500 other students from across the UK, and it has inspired many of the new Year 8 pupils to follow in their footsteps.

But it has not gone down well with everyone.
Pat Bhattacharya, head of science at the school, said: "It's a little bit tricky telling the boys it's not for them and I asked them why they thought it was just for girls and everybody knew the answer... It's to encourage girls to address the gender imbalance."

As a computer programmer before she became a teacher, she knows how male-dominated an environment it can be.
Zara Pristov-King, who was part of the winning team, said: "It definitely raised awareness.

"I decided to take the subject because of the competition and I may be taking it for A-level."

Teammate Jess Peck described the experience of winning as "amazing". She said: "I think it's really important to spread the word and competitions like this really open up opportunities."

The NCSC, which is part of the government intelligence organisation GCHQ, also has a scheme of student bursaries and courses to help even up the gender split.The first round of the CyberFirst Girls Competition 2019 is all online and entries opened on Monday 10th December.

Sky

You Might Also Read:

Are Women Better At Cyber Security?:

 

 

« Banks Lose Tens Of Millions Of Dollars In Hollywood-style Hacks
AI Will Solve Marketing Problems »

Directory of Suppliers

IT Governance

IT Governance

IT Governance is a leading global provider of information security solutions. Download our free guide and find out how ISO 27001 can help protect your organisation's information.

Practice Labs

Practice Labs

Practice Labs is an IT competency hub, where live-lab environments give access to real equipment for hands-on practice of essential cybersecurity skills.

CSI Consulting Services

CSI Consulting Services

Get Advice From The Experts: * Training * Penetration Testing * Data Governance * GDPR Compliance. Connecting you to the best in the business.

Authentic8

Authentic8

Authentic8 transforms how organizations secure and control the use of the web with Silo, its patented cloud browser.

MIRACL

MIRACL

MIRACL provides the world’s only single step Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA) which can replace passwords on 100% of mobiles, desktops or even Smart TVs.

Tenable Network Security

Tenable Network Security

Tenable Network Security - Need to Evolve to a Risk-Based Vulnerability Management Strategy but Don’t Know How? This Guide Will Show You.

BackupVault

BackupVault

BackupVault is a leading provider of completely automatic, fully encrypted online, cloud backup.

CYRIN

CYRIN

CYRIN® Cyber Range. Real Tools, Real Attacks, Real Scenarios. See why leading educational institutions and companies in the U.S. have begun to adopt the CYRIN® system.

Jooble

Jooble

Jooble is a job search aggregator operating in 71 countries worldwide. We simplify the job search process by displaying active job ads from major job boards and career sites across the internet.

DigitalStakeout

DigitalStakeout

A simple and cost-effective solution to monitor, investigate and analyze data from the web, social media and cyber sources to identify threats and make better security decisions.

NextPlane

NextPlane

NextPlane provide secure real-time B2B unified communication and collaboration solutions within and across business systems.

Harbottle & Lewis LLP

Harbottle & Lewis LLP

Harbottle & Lewis is a UK law firm specialising in in the Technology, Media and Entertainment sectors. Practice areas cover data security and data protection.

CybelAngel

CybelAngel

CybelAngel offers a service for the real-time detection of data leakage on the Dark Web and the Deep Web on behalf of large corporations.

sic[!]sec

sic[!]sec

sic[!]sec provide products and services for web application security.

Futurex

Futurex

Futurex is a globally recognized provider of enterprise-class data encryption solutions.

Cyber Defense Initiative Conference (CDIC)

Cyber Defense Initiative Conference (CDIC)

Cyber Defense Initiative Conference (CDIC) is one of the most distinguished Cybersecurity, Privacy and Information Security Conference in Thailand and Southeast Asia.

Red Canari

Red Canari

Red Canari are specialists in penetration testing and security assessments. We think like hackers – and act like them – to disclose discreet dangers to your organization.

MyCyberSecurity Clinic (MyCSC)

MyCyberSecurity Clinic (MyCSC)

MyCyberSecurity Clinic's main goal is toward establishing an international reference centre for excellence in the field of digital forensics and data recovery services.