International Women’s Day is a global day of celebration and recognition for the social, economic, cultural, and political achievements of women. It’s celebrated on March 8th every year and originated in Europe during the early 1900s. The day provides an opportunity for people to come together to support and honour female contributions around the world.
The theme for this year on the IWD website is “Embrace Equity” – which encourages everyone to focus on gender equity and get the world talking about why equal opportunities aren’t enough. You see, people start from different places, so true inclusion and belonging require equitable action.
As technology advances and our reliance on it increases, there’s a growing demand for talented professionals in cybersecurity. However, women continue to be underrepresented in the profession, despite making up half the population. To give you an example of the numbers, in 2021, women accounted for 17% of CISO positions and 27% of CIO positions in Fortune 500 companies. In 2022, women held only 13% and 8% of Head of Information Security roles in 380 Fortune 500 companies and 150 EMEA headquartered companies, respectively. In 2022, in the UK, women held only 8 CISO and 20% CIOs positions at FTSE 100 companies. Women are doing better at the entry level, with 25% of women in cybersecurity roles and between 26% and 27% of women in tech roles.
What needs to be done?
Many people understand that the gender gap in cybersecurity (or tech) is caused by a combination of factors, from biases and toxic behaviour to unequal pay. They also hear that there’s no shortage of companies and organisations that say they want to do better when it comes to gender diversity. However, for many, the question remains:
What exactly can I do to help?
The good news is, there are plenty of things you can do to support more women in cybersecurity, no matter your level or gender. In this docuent I’m giving you some ideas, so please use it as a guide and starting point.
Download the resource for information on the action steps.
Resources mentioned (& for extended reading
- IN Security Book & Movement
- The Source
- The Source T-Shirts
- Why Women Matter in Cybersecurity
- Minority salience
- Harvard IAT
- Share a new #EmbraceEquity action
The gender gap in cybersecurity is an important issue to be aware of and help close. As professionals in this field, it’s our responsibility to ensure diversity. When it comes to gender diversity, we can do this by educating ourselves on the gender gap by using any of the 30 actions given here, and without blame or shame. Now, more than ever, is the time to create lasting change, so let’s come together to bridge this gender gap and ensure all human beings are empowered to access the same opportunities in cybersecurity.