Fortinet bolstered its commitment to address the cybersecurity skills gap by pledging to train 1 million people globally across the next 5 years through its Training Advancement Agenda (TAA) initiatives and Network Security Experts (NSE) Training Institute programs. Additionally, Fortinet’s TAA initiative includes a strong focus on attracting greater diversity through the NSE Security Academy Program, Education Outreach Program and Veterans Program as part of its Corporate Social Responsibility efforts.
Ken Xie, Founder, Chairman of the Board, and Chief Executive Officer at Fortinet
“On the heels of the Biden Administration calling for cross-sector leaders to tackle the cybersecurity challenges affecting organizations and people globally, Fortinet is furthering its commitment to significantly reduce the cyber skills gap as part of this initiative. With the rise of sophisticated threats, organizations are more at risk than ever before. To further address these issues, today Fortinet announced additional outcomes we will strive to achieve as we grow our programs and strategic partnerships to address the talent shortage that plagues our industry, ultimately reducing security risks and threats.”
The Cyber Skills Shortage Presents a Dire Challenge for all Organizations
The skills gap is a significant challenge for organizations of all sizes. According to an (ISC)2 report, in order to fill the cybersecurity skills gap worldwide, 3.12 million professionals are needed. This issue is compounded with the growing sophisticated threat landscape with a recent report from Fortinet’s FortiGuard Labs finding that ransomware has increased ten-fold. As many organizations struggle to find talent to fill critical roles needed to help combat these threats, strained security teams are challenged to keep pace with the evolving threat landscape and face more security risks.
The Biden Administration is calling on organizations across private and public sectors to assist in an initiative to reduce security risks by helping to develop more cybersecurity talent. For a number of years, Fortinet has been dedicated to closing the skills gap, with the establishment of its training programs and TAA initiative, including making all its NSE self-paced training courses available to anyone for free at the beginning of the pandemic in 2020. Fortinet will further build on this longstanding commitment with a pledge to train 1 million people in the next 5 years.
Fortinet Answers Call to Combat Cybersecurity Challenges through TAA Initiative and the NSE Training Institute
Fortinet’s TAA and NSE Training Institute programs provide cybersecurity training and certifications, career growth resources and hiring opportunities to make a career in cyber attainable for all, including women, minorities, veterans and students. Below are key highlights and recent accomplishments contributing to Fortinet’s work thus far to bring new talent into the field and build the future cyber workforce to close the cybersecurity skills gap.
Cultivating partnerships with business leaders and the public sector: Fortinet collaborates with global leaders to foster a skilled, inclusive and diverse cyber workforce, including IBM, Salesforce and the World Economic Forum. Through our Education Outreach Program, partnerships extend to various sectors, including academia, government and nonprofits, to ensure all populations – such as women, minorities and veterans – are provided with opportunities and resources for a career in cyber. For example, in the last 2 years alone, Fortinet has certified more than 2,000 veterans and their spouses
Momentum with the NSE Certification Program: The Certification Program is an eight-level training and certification program designed to provide technical professionals with independent validation of their network security skills and experience. With more than 680,000 certifications issued and more than 1 million hours of training consumed from the onset of the pandemic to now alone, the award-winning NSE Certification Program continues to gain traction by offering one of the industry’s top cybersecurity training programs. Through this program, Fortinet is helping professionals and others to learn new skills, reskill or upskill in cybersecurity.
Building a Cyber-Aware Workforce with the Information Security Awareness and Training Service: Fortinet is helping develop a cyber-aware workforce with its Information Security Awareness and Training Service, introduced in 2020 free of cost for organizations of all sizes. Fortinet’s Information Security Awareness and Training Service offers industry-leading cybersecurity awareness components to educate people about today’s cyber threats, such as phishing, social engineering, and ransomware attacks, and how to protect against them. The awareness and training service is suitable for the entire workforce, from technical to non-technical employees and contractors. Additionally, this free service was developed in alignment with NIST guidelines: NIST 800-50 and NIST 800-16.
Developing OT Skills through Training and Career Pathways: With critical infrastructures being a target for many recent cyber attacks, it is crucial for OT organizations to have the proper security and skilled professionals to protect themselves. Fortinet has introduces a new OT security course as part of its NSE level 7 certification to expand technical skills for securing OT environments. OT security is also covered in NSE 4, NSE 5 and NSE 6 courses. Additionally, adding to its four existing pathways, Fortinet recently released a new education pathway focused on Operational Technology with information on the potential job opportunities that exist related to this environment. This new OT education pathway serves as a roadmap on what training and certifications are helpful for anyone exploring a career in OT security roles and aligns to the National Initiative for Cybersecurity Education’s (NICE) cybersecurity workforce work roles.