Globally, about a quarter Cybersecurity jobs belong to women, but unfortunately this is 49.58%I’m not saying every industry should have a perfect 50/50 split, but because cybersecurity is a male-dominated industry, companies are looking for a more diverse workplace where women The time has come to address the challenges faced in joining the workforce.
While progress has been made in the last decade (only 10% of cybersecurity jobs were held by women in 2013), more needs to be done.from Lack of industry role models In addition to poor media representation and lack of mentoring, women face many challenges in cybersecurity.
So what are the top three obstacles women face?
underrepresentation in the media
Media plays an important role in creating and maintaining stereotypes. TV shows and movies often impose concepts and clichés on viewers that they unconsciously accept as facts.
Children are susceptible to media stereotypes, which can lead to sexist thinking, especially when it comes to work. This reasoning can greatly influence an individual’s perception of the real world, such as life aspirations and career choices. for example, 500% more naval recruits following the release of top gunstarring Tom Cruise.
In the 1990s, one show proved particularly effective in persuading women to pursue STEM careers. X-file, Gillian Anderson plays Dr. Dana Scully. As the only female STEM her character on primetime television in the 90s, she had a significant impact on the female viewer base, according to a recent report looking into the “Scully effect.”of According to the report, 63% (PDF) Among the women surveyed, Dana Scully says she has increased her belief in the importance of STEM subjects.
These examples are how important representation is Media and displays show how lack of visibility can distort the audience’s perception of what can be achieved. It is time for the media to understand and recognize their influence and the stereotypes they impose.
A male-dominated workplace can come with some problems
Cybersecurity is only about 25% female, so the industry is officially classified as male-dominated. Ask any woman. The idea of entering a workplace full of men is not appealing.This is likely in 2021 6.5% (PDF) of U.S. women work in male-dominated occupations.
With issues such as the gender pay gap, sexual harassment, underrepresentation, lack of mentoring and negative stereotypes, it’s no wonder women are reluctant to enlist in male-dominated workplaces. must be addressed top-down.cyber security leaders Be aware of the work culture they foster And be open to discussing and working on the issues they find.
A 2017 study by Pew Research Center Women in male-dominated industries were found to be more likely to be harassed than those working in female-dominated sectors. Therefore, businesses should create a safe space for employees, especially women, to report workplace harassment and undesirable behavior. Another initiative cybersecurity companies should establish is a female mentor program. It supports women workers, supports their professional growth, and helps bridge the gender gap in cybersecurity.
Lack of industry role models
Kids these days may not have posters of their favorite celebrities hanging in their bedrooms or lockers, but role models are still important.The importance of role models is often underestimated. A visible representation of what is possible encourages people to push boundaries, strive to be better, and become more ambitious.
Crest’s report — ‘Examining the Gender Gap in Cybersecurity’ — 59% of the women surveyed had “various” experiences in the cybersecurity industry and received some support, but also faced many challenges. The report identified two key areas for her improvement: increasing the visibility of women and improving mentoring of women to support their entry and advancement within the industry.
The problem with the lack of role models is their ramifications. There are fewer women to respect in the industry, which can hinder women’s entry and perpetuate the divide. It’s time to break this cycle.
Diversity and inclusion lead to a more rounded perspective. Team members who bring different perspectives, so that new problems can be solved. Women’s current roadblocks in cybersecurity won’t go away overnight, but by identifying problems and raising awareness, opportunities for change and improvement are welcomed. Cybersecurity is ready for the women’s revolution.