Microsoft India, infotech lobby group Nasscom, and the central government have launched a three-year programme to train 1,000 women in cybersecurity belonging to underserved communities.
Under the CyberShikshaa programme, the women will be educated in 10 locations across the country and offered employment opportunities, said Microsoft India in a statement.
CyberShikshaa, whose first phase will roll out across Noida, Patna, Hyderabad and Mohali, is open to women science graduates aged 20 to 27.
CyberShikshaa will comprise of a four-month course with theory, case studies and hands-on projects managed by a group of training partners led by Centre for Development of Advanced Computing, an R&D organisation of the ministry of electronics and infotech. CyberShikshaa will also include mentoring sessions and workshops with industry leaders as well as soft skills training and technical sessions by Microsoft’s employee volunteers.
“There has been an increased participation from the industry, government and academia to develop cybersecurity skills required for India. This programme will not only provide an impetus to bridging the skill gap but will also help draw more women into the cybersecurity domain,” said Ajay Prakash Sawhney, secretary, ministry of electronics and infotech.
According to Nasscom, the strength of the women workforce in the IT-ITeS (infotech-enabled services) industry currently stands at 34%.
Anant Maheshwari, president of Microsoft India, said, “…we see a multi-fold growth of digital assets. This increases the need for an enhanced cybersecurity infrastructure and advanced security solutions.” Maheshwari added, “India is also fast emerging as a prime destination for offshore cybersecurity research and development (R&D) as well as security operations centres. This will lead to the next wave of jobs – one we must be ready for with a skilled workforce.”