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IT Industry Council Backs National Cyber Director Office’s Workforce Diversity Plan

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The Office of the National Cyber Director should move away from traditional recruitment and into skills-based hiring in order to create a diverse cybersecurity workforce, according to the Information Technology Industry Council.

In its response to the ONCD’s request for information, ITI expressed its intent to be part of a national strategy to bolster cyber workforce, training and education.

The council also recommended that the agency hire self-taught IT experts for federal cyber positions to prevent them from being lured into malicious hacking. It encouraged the creation of student grant programs and loans to fund technology upgrades in schools and foster more careers in IT security.

To promote diversity, ONCD should establish public-and-private partnerships and invest in internships and curriculum development for minority serving institutions, such as historically black colleges and universities.

“ITI’s membership is deeply impacted by the ongoing shortage of cybersecurity professionals, and our industry similarly benefits from a workforce that reflects a variety of backgrounds, perspectives, and experiences,” said Gordon Bitko, the council’s executive vice president of public sector policy.