It has been reported today that ‘The Girl Scouts of America’ is partnering with security firm Palo Alto Networks to create a series of 18 new cybersecurity badges that its troops can start earning in September 2018. This comes at a time when there is an estimated shortage of 1.5million cybersecurity professionals in the industry, by 2020. In response to this news, Lee Munson, Security Researcher at Comparitech.com has offered his insight.
Lee Munson, Security Researcher at Comparitech.com:
“Having been prepared for just about anything since 1912, the Girl Scouts of America is now showing how it is also a forward-thinking association with several new badges, that will not only interest members but also, perhaps, set them on the path to an exciting career in an industry that is desperate for new entrants.
By offering a range of badges covering general computing, coding and even cyber security, to girls from kindergarten age upwards, the Girl Scouts will do much to encourage women into an industry that is crying out for a more diverse workforce.
Failing that, anyone gaining the new badges will, at the very least, have a much better understanding of the IT world and, more specifically, the threats they may face, from cyberbullying to internet-based attacks, as well as how to protect their privacy online.
Other than a slight concern over how the ethical hacking badge may be delivered – and the risk of a Girl Scout being corrupted to the dark side – I believe this new initiative is one that could, and should, be copied around the world by other clubs and societies catering to young children.”