In the movie Swordfish, a rogue government agent played by John Travolta sets up a test for a paroled hacker played by Hugh Jackman. The idea is for Travolta's character to find out whether Jackman's character is any good at hacking by challenging him to hack the U.S. Department of Defense computer network in less than 1 minute.
Only, is it really that hard to hack the Department of Defense? I mean hacker Johnathan James was just 15 when he hacked the Department of Defense in 1999. A few years before that, a different teenage dream, 16-year-old Richard Pryce, became the Pentagon's worst nightmare by transferring stolen Korean research data into a U.S. Air Force computer network.
Those incidents both predate Swordfish by five or six years, so maybe the government had gotten smarter, at least in the movies, by the time that Hugh Jackman showed up. Or maybe it's just never been all that hard: Last week, the U.S. Capitol was breached by, essentially, some dudes off the street — and any of them could have gotten up to all kinds of digital mischief during the brief window of time that they had the run of the premises.
Securing computers, networks, and information is complicated enough with even taking the problem of direct physical access into consideration. That's one reason why there is a steady gap between the demand for trained and talented cybersecurity professionals and the supply of trained and talented cybersecurity professionals. Almost every business or organization wants and needs more effective security.
Certification is one of the ways that some people get trained in cybersecurity. For others, it's a standard that verifies their skills to employers. For many, achieving and maintaining certification is also a great way to stay abreast of changes in the wider cybersecurity sphere. That's one thing we're curious about: How are certification providers doing at keeping up with the times (and technology)?
We also want to get inside the day-to-day world of professional cybersecurity just a bit and get a snapshot of what the men and women on the inside see there each day. That is why the time has come for another survey: Welcome to our Security Certification Survey.
As we always do, we've added a dash of incentive to participate. If you take the survey all the way to the end, we'll thank you with either (or both!) of two rewards. You can get a free digital copy of the next issue of Certification Magazine. Or get a one-year print subscription at 40 percent off the normal cost. (Hate making decisions? Get 'em both! We don't mind.)
BIG THANKS to everyone who participated in our Security Certification Survey! Watch for the results to appear the forthcoming 2021 Spring Edition of Certification Magazine.