This past summer, we blogged about the gender gap in the information security industry. Although women have the skills necessary for success in information security, at that time, they only represented 11% of the industry. The security industry is one of the fastest growing industries worldwide, and women make up over 46% of the workforce, so there is certainly room for improvement.
Where are the women in tech now?
Women are definitely breaking into tech, and we need this trend to pick up and continue:
- Women make up 13.2% of the world’s CIOs.
- In Europe, 50% of tech companies have women in leadership roles.
- 25% of chief digital officers are women.
- Of high-tech fortune 500 companies, 13% have women on their boards.
- Women represent 37% of C-level employees in tech firms worldwide.
- 18% of computing-related degrees in the U.S. are earned by women.
Thoughts for inspiring women in IT
To build a robust female security team, we’re going to have to start inspiring young women to pursue digital careers. During a fall conference on women in tech, ideas on how to do just that came up:
- Show young people how the Internet can be used to solve problems and improve lives.
- Inspire those with math backgrounds by showing that IT is about finding solutions to problems.
- Offer recognition and awards for those who show an interest in IT (Advance IT MN offers the annual Aspiration for Women in Computing Award)
- Encourage schools to teach coding and allow BYOD for better tech experiences.
Keeping up with new and quickly evolving threats is a constant challenge for the security industry. Women can bring new perspectives and different skill sets to help meet those challenges. The threats are diverse; your security team needs to be diverse too. As women become better represented in the tech and security industry, it’s important to continue to talk about those leaders and encourage young women to apply their talents to IT security.