Deloitte’s global Women in Cyber campaign promotes diversity in the workforce
International consulting firm Deloitte is launching a global campaign to encourage companies to hire and promote women in cybersecurity roles.
The company’s first global campaign for the Women in Cyber program was announced earlier this month and is supported by local Deloitte branches around the world. It will officially launch in Canada on June 1, said Beth Dewitt, Partner and Board Member of Deloitte Canada and Global Campaign Leader.
Initially it includes 14 videos of women who hold cybersecurity-related roles at Deloitte around the world. Over time, it will also include articles, blogs and podcasts featuring interviews with Canadian women, their careers and their learning opportunities. There will also be seminars and webinars featuring Deloitte and its clients on a variety of cybersecurity topics such as how they solve cyber challenges.
In an interview, Dewitt said the campaign was in part aimed at encouraging employers to hire more women to address the cybersecurity talent shortage, and in part to let them know the importance of hiring people who may have a different point of view, in a different way. to solve problems.
“Representation [in an organization] is really important, ”she explained. “To change power systems or recruit more people into an industry or get more votes at the table, it comes down to representation. “People have to see and believe that their voice matters and that people like them exist. People need role models, people need others to watch, to have paths to follow.
“This campaign is unique because it uses our own role models and professionals and says, ‘Join us. We need more like us and more like you. This is meant to be at Deloitte and the cybersecurity profession as a whole.
“For me, this campaign is about showing others that your experiences and background – what you look like, where you grew up, who you are – it all matters, and that fits here and the industry as a whole. “
Why aren’t there more women in cybersecurity?
There are a number of surveys on the cybersecurity talent shortage, but there is no doubt that men are overrepresented in IT in general and cybersecurity in particular. Deloitte cites a study that predicts that women will occupy 25% of cybersecurity jobs globally by the end of 2021. He also cites a 2019 study by the International Information System Security Certification Consortium (ISC ) indicating that the global cybersecurity workforce is expected to grow further. 145 percent to meet labor market demand.
Dewitt admits that despite the demand for and the possibility of well-paying jobs, cybersecurity carries a reputation as a technical, male-dominated industry where people sit in front of screens 24 hours a day. she said, don’t see many women in leadership positions, and the feeling by many that technical training is necessary for a career.
It wasn’t for Dewitt. She earned a graduate degree in Social Anthropology before being hired by an IT privacy boutique and ended up focusing on the private life and healthcare industry. Eleven years ago, she was hired by Deloitte. She is now a partner in the cyber risk advisory practice and leads the national data protection and privacy practice.
Dewitt admits that she would not volunteer to do a job requiring computer training. But she is qualified to explain why a certain cybersecurity strategy or technical work is needed in a particular organization.
“Because cyber is everywhere, it requires a wide range of experiences and perspectives to help identify potential risks and cyber solutions,” she says. “People need to understand that it is no longer a job for those who only have a computer science degree. Professionals with backgrounds in anthropology, economics, business, HR, and other disciplines can apply their problem-solving skills and perspectives to cybersecurity. A team that includes women from diverse backgrounds and perspectives can help an organization think about the “art of the possible” when solving challenges. “
Emily Mossburg, global cybersecurity leader at Deloitte, said the industry needs to “extend the vernacular” used in cybersecurity careers. Roles such as ethical hackers, data privacy professionals and cyber strategists should be made more visible.
“We need to break down common misconceptions about what kind of work there is for cyber professionals and what kind of experience you need to have to do that job,” she said.
Over the course of her career, Dewitt says she has at times been faced with assumptions about what she might do based on what she called the unconscious bias of what women are good. This included the question of whether she was able to take on certain tasks because she had young children. She has also seen women sidelined or silenced because of who they are or the way they say things.
On the other hand, she added, more and more organizations are becoming aware of sexism and are putting in place strategies to address it.
Canada is “a work in progress,” she said, noting that a number of women hold prominent positions in cybersecurity. However, there is “a lot more to do”.