Over 4,000 companies join Cybersecurity Skills Initiative to protect against cybercrime threats

Oct 3rd, 2018

Over 4,000 companies join Cybersecurity Skills Initiative to protect against cybercrime threats


Over 4,000 companies to join New Cybersecurity Skills Initiative to help protect against growing cybercrime threats


Wednesday, 3 October 2018: Skillnet Ireland and Technology Ireland ICT Skillnet launched the Cybersecurity Skills Initiative at the Cybersecurity Skills Conference at the Irish Management Institute in Dublin today.

The new Cybersecurity Skills Initiative (CSI) was designed as a direct response to counter the growing volume of cyber-attacks by promoting security best practices and encouraging security technology adoption. Specifically, the initiative will provide cross and upskilling opportunities for IT operatives across all sectors to a recognised standard, allowing them to act as cyber security officers for their organisations, thereby raising the general level of protection across the country.

The conference, where the initiative was launched, brought together over 200 key industry leaders across technology, finance and business to share ideas and collaborate in a series of workshops addressing key cybersecurity issues and opportunities.

The initiative contains a comprehensive plan to train 5,000 people in 4,000 companies in Cybersecurity skills to tackle the issue over the next three years. This Initiative promotes five key objectives described as “The Road to Excellence” for Ireland in the Cybersecurity sphere, tackling; Cybersecurity Skills Pathway, Organic Skills Growth, Cybersecurity as a Business Issue, Attracting Young People and Continuous Professional Development.


Minister of State at the Department of Communications, Climate Action and Environment Sean Kyne, T.D., who officially opened the conference said:

“The rapid pace of growth in digitisation in every sector and all facets of society brings increasing levels and sophistication of cybercrime. For Ireland which has established itself as an attractive location for digital business this presents both a risk and an opportunity to take the lead as a centre of excellence in cybersecurity.  I welcome this new Cybersecurity Skills Initiative that will provide a solution to close the growing skills gap in this area.”


Skillnet Ireland, Chief Executive Paul Healy welcomed the timely initiative and highlighted the importance of upskilling to deal with the growing volume of cyber-attacks:

“Given the ever-escalating number of cyber threats and the serious risks these pose right across our economy, Skillnet Ireland understood the strategic significance of CSI and we were pleased to provide funding to Technology Ireland to develop the initiative.

CSI is a great example of what can be achieved by enabling industry and practitioners to take the lead in determining both the problems and the solutions. Through CSI, Skillnet Ireland and Technology Ireland ICT Skillnet have facilitated a multi-disciplinary response that has resulted in employers, employees, Government agencies and other key stakeholders coming together to address this complex and urgent challenge.”


Úna Fitzpatrick, Director, Technology Ireland, said Irish companies need to upskill their existing workforces to respond to the growing need for cybersecurity;

“The shortage of skilled cybersecurity specialists has been well-documented, and while people, processes and technology all are important components in establishing a robust security program for any business, that first element – people – must lead the way to deliver an improved security position.

By enthusiastically supporting this initiative, employers are investing in cybersecurity skills that will produce a pipeline of highly capable experts for this strategically important area and this will have a positive impact on the Irish economy.”


Speaking at the launch Carmel Somers, Talent Manager, IBM and Chair of the Cybersecurity Skills Initiative (CSI) said; “There is a growing shortage of skilled cybersecurity personnel to protect against and respond to security breaches and the Cybersecurity Skills Initiative (CSI) contains a comprehensive plan to train people in Cybersecurity skills and help companies to tackle these Cybersecurity skills issues.”

For more information about the Cybersecurity Skills Initiative, please visit the ICT Skillnet website. 


ICT Skillnet is co-funded by Skillnet Ireland and member companies. Skillnet Ireland is funded from the National Training Fund through the Department of Education and Skills.

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