BCS and the professionalisation of the cyber security industry

Cyber security is very much in the public eye with stories continually in the media about commercial security breaches. This has re-emphasised its importance to national security, not least in the context of the heightened international threat from terrorism.

In the November spending review, the chancellor announced an increase in national cyber security funding to £1.9bn by 2020. In these times of austerity, it’s a clear signal of just how serious an issue this is for us all as individuals, companies and public bodies. And the message is being heard; cyber security is the fastest growing sector within IT and 2016 investment in cyber security is forecast to exceed £3.3bn.

Addressing GCHQ during his spending review, the chancellor outlined how this spend will be allocated for maximum benefit to the UK’s cyber security programme. Recognising the most skilled and experienced individuals within the profession is an important part of preparing the UK, both commercially and publically, to face the increasing threat.

Professionalising the cyber security industry itself will be crucial over the coming years. CCP certification will remain a cornerstone and gold standard for IA professionals, and BCS is proud to be a certifying body on behalf of CESG.

The number of newly-certified CCPs has continued to grow over the three years the scheme has been certifying. As of September this year, 1,842 CCP certificates have been issued to 1,263 IA professionals – a figure that compares favourably to other more established routes. This is despite significant change including the closure of the CLAS scheme, and is testimony to the value of the CCP certification. 

But its true value is in the body of certified professional experts that it represents, not least the assessors and interviewers that enable the programme to thrive. In a recent interview, CESG’s CCP scheme manager heralded these experts for their commitment and effectiveness:

‘I am particularly grateful to all CCP assessors and interviewers, who continue to offer your own time in order to “give back” to your profession by recognising the achievements of others. Providing a truly timely and professional assessment service to applicants is crucial in growing the reputation of the CCP scheme across the industry. Last but not least, we very much value the continuing commitment to CCP certification demonstrated by BCS, which reflects the close links that exist between the Information Assurance and IT professions.’

By supporting the evolution of the cyber security sector and the calibre of the individuals working in it, the CCP scheme fulfils a strategic function that benefits the UK’s national security. The impact of the experts and professionals who facilitate the scheme cannot be underestimated - they play a pivotal role in growing the reputation of the scheme and contributing to the development of the sector.

Find out more about the CESG Certified Professional scheme at bcs.org/cesg

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