The Ministry of Defence has launched a test to identify armed forces personnel with a skills for cyber security work.
The MoD test comes as warnings are sounded about a lack of cyber skills – Photo credit: UK government
The Defence Cyber Aptitude Test, produced with IBM, has a number of challenges designed to measure individual’s abilities but not their prior technical knowledge.
It is being rolled out across the UK defence service for those in the early stages of their training and service careers.
The lead on the project for the MoD, Harry Porteous, said: “It’s a useful tool for service career and branch managers to help identify individuals with natural talent and the right skills to succeed at the cutting edge of defence cyber operations.”
The move comes as concerns have been raised about a lack of cyber security skills across government.
Robert Nowill, chairman of Cyber Security Challenge UK – a body that aims to encourage more people into cyber – told a conference yesterday that there was a need to promote the profession.
“The profession is relatively new, and understanding of the nature of the job is poor,” he told the Cyber Security Summit in London.
He added that diversity was also a problem, with just 10% of cyber security professionals being female.
The lack of cyber security skills is part of a wider problem faced by professions involving digital.
A recent House of Commons Science and Technology Committee report called for urgent action on the digital skills gap in the UK, after finding 12.6 million adults lack basic digital skills and only 35% of computer teachers in schools have a relevant degree.