Cybersecurity is a crucial component in today’s activities that rely on Information and Communications Technology (ICT). The need to protect one’s private information has grown significantly in recent years, not only due to the advances made in ICTs across the globe but also due to the ongoing COVID-19 Pandemic that has forced virtually everyone to use the online space for most of their activities. Various governments have also passed laws and regulations, further highlighting the demand for competent cybersecurity across the world.
As a skills need, however, cybersecurity is rather unique in that it often revolves around certifications on different types of cybersecurity systems and approaches. The skills imparted are vendor-based as a result, leading to varying levels of competence among prospective cybersecurity professionals rather than a more unified one. Furthermore, the importance placed by countries on cybersecurity also tends to vary, with the Philippines lagging behind the likes of Malaysia and Singapore, for example, in terms of training cybersecurity experts.
TESDA also currently lacks the specific training regulations that can be used to teach cybersecurity skills through a technical-vocational approach, but this is mitigated by the presence of other ICT-related courses that should be used as a baseline for more specialized skills. All in all, Philippine cybersecurity is in its infancy compared to its contemporaries in the world. However, with further research and partnerships with other stakeholders, the Philippines will have the means to meet this skills gap in ICT and be more prepared to face the rigors of a growing computerized and Internet-reliant world.
Technology research and advisory company Gartner defined Cybersecurity as “the combination of people, policies, processes and technologies employed by an enterprise to protect its cyber assets.” Subsets of cybersecurity include, but are not limited to:
• Information and Communications Technology (ICT)
• Internet of Things (IoT)
• Information Security
• Operational Technology (OT)