Cyberskills on Course to Mitigate the Rise of Attacks

15 Aug, 2023

Min read

Rise In Attacks Leads To a Boost in Demand for Cybersecurity Professionals

Recovering from a ransomware attack can be difficult and expensive for any business and serves to highlight the need to develop proactive and strategic approaches to cyber security. So, how prepared is the local government sector in dealing with such attacks? One solution now offered by Munster Technological University is a customised course in cyber-security awareness and risk mitigation for individual local authorities.

Judging from the number of attacks on local government IT systems around the world, it is become more evident that the local government sector will not escape the firing line. Providing one solution to the problem, Munster Technological University (MTU) is offering a wide range of flexible online customised courses in cyber-security for council staff members.

MTU is hosting the CyberSkills programme, in partnership with the University of Limerick and TU Dublin, that offers courses for IT professionals to upskill in the latest cybersecurity techniques. The aim is to address the critical skills shortage of cybersecurity professionals in Ireland and to improve the cyber resilience of Irish citizens through skills, training and research. Cyber Skills is funded under the Higher Education Authority’s Human Capital Initiative.

The impact of a successful cyber-attack on a local government includes:

  • The financial cost of an attack due to the theft of money or information which could lead to disruption to trading or loss of business.
  • Reputational damage possibly resulting in customers losing trust in you.
  • Legal consequences such as fines and regulatory sanctions could be imposed from the Data Protection Commission (DPC). Organisations can now face fines of up to 4% of annual global turnover or €20 million-whichever is greater.

City and county councils may have robust systems and protocols in place that identify and repel cyber threats. However, the sophistication of hackers as well as the speed in which they can exploit any data breach will continue to present challenges for all councils. Pointing to an urgent need to constantly upskill or reskill the IT department within any local authority, Jacqueline Kehoe, Project Manager at Cyber Skills, says that training must be cyclical. “Attacks affect everyone in the organisation, so staff members will need to be refreshed in the latest techniques and there is also a need to raise awareness on how to handle email and other online threats.”

The courses have been designed in association with MTU’s industry partners for specific job roles. “Currently, we’re seeing the biggest gap in secure network operations, software development and systems architects. Course participants can gain Special Purpose Certificates or micro-credentials (smaller academic credits) accredited by the universities through online courses. They can take a single subject micro-credential or study up to four modules for a pathway. It’s up to each individual and how they want to achieve the qualifications,” Kehoe notes.

 

The above article appeared in the Council Review Journal for City and County Councils, whose website can be reached here.  Jackie's article can be downloaded and read here: Jackie's article

 

 

 

Related Posts

Catherine and Laura at Cyber Ireland Conference 2023 for Cyber Security courses

Join Us at CINC24: Securing Ireland’s Digital Future

Join leaders from industry, academia, and government at CINC24 on 26th September 2024 to address cybersecurity challenges and explore “Securing Ireland’s Digital Future.

Read more
Dr Hazel Murray and Dr George O'Mahony in Estonia. Cybersecurity courses

Cyber Skills lecturers Dr. George O’Mahony and Dr. Hazel Murray Join an Irish Delegation to Estonia for Cybersecurity Insights.

MTU and Cyber Skills lecturers joined an Irish delegation to Estonia, gaining valuable cybersecurity insights. The visit included engagements with leading Estonian organizations and discussions on future collaborations. This experience aims to enhance Ireland's cybersecurity landscape.

Read more
Cybersecurity Courses

Why is Cyber Security a Good Career Choice for a Retiring Garda or Military Personnel?

Explore why cybersecurity is an ideal career for retiring Garda and military personnel. Discover transferable skills, job security, and competitive salaries in this high-demand field. Transition smoothly into a rewarding, mission-driven second career.

Read more