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How Microsoft & DSCI Trains Women in Cybersecurity

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Recently Microsoft India and DSCI launched CyberShikshaa, a three-year programme to create a pool of skilled cybersecurity women professionals in India. Read on to know more about it…

Microsoft India and Data Security Council of India (DSCI) recently launched CyberShikshaa, a three-year programme to create a pool of skilled cybersecurity women professionals in India. The CyberShikshaa initiative is supported by the Ministry of Information Technology (MeitY)’s Information Security Education & Awareness (ISEA). As part of the initiative, thousand women from underserved communities will be trained in 10 locations across India and offered employment opportunities.

The Programme
The initiative has been formalised under Microsoft India’s corporate social responsibility unit. CyberShikshaa, whose first phase will roll out across Noida, Patna, Hyderabad and Mohali, is open to women science graduates aged 20 to 27.

CyberShikshaa will comprise of a four-month course with theory, case studies and hands-on projects managed by a group of training partners led by Centre for Development of Advanced Computing (C-DAC), an R&D organisation of the ministry of electronics and infotech. CyberShikshaa will also include mentoring sessions and workshops with industry leaders as well as soft skills training and technical sessions by Microsoft’s employee volunteers.

Anant Maheshwari, president of Microsoft India, said, “…we see a multi-fold growth of digital assets. This increases the need for an enhanced cybersecurity infrastructure and advanced security solutions.” Maheshwari added, “India is also fast emerging as a prime destination for offshore cybersecurity research and development (R&D) as well as security operations centres. This will lead to the next wave of jobs – one we must be ready for with a skilled workforce.”

According to National Association of Software and Services Companies (Nasscom), the strength of the women workforce in the IT-ITeS (InfoTech-enabled Services) Industry currently stands at 34%.

Rama Vedashree, CEO, DSCI, said that “Cybersecurity skills development and enabling growth opportunities to women talent in cybersecurity domain is a key imperative for government and industry. DSCI is pleased to partner with Microsoft in developing industry-ready women cybersecurity professionals through the CyberShikshaa program,”

CyberShikshaa initiative will also include mentoring sessions and workshops with Industry leaders, soft skills training and technical sessions by Microsoft employee volunteers. Campus interviews will be organised for students on successful completion of the course.

Ajay Prakash Sawhney, Secretary, MeitY at the launch said that “Bridging the skill gap in the niche domain of cybersecurity is a national imperative. There has been an increased participation from industry, government and academia to develop cybersecurity skills required for India. This programme…will not only provide impetus to bridging the skill gap but will also help draw more women into cybersecurity domain,”

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