Federal agencies face a rapidly approaching deadline to identify cybersecurity workforce shortages.
Boosting the government’s information security workforce is a key part of the Obama administration’s long-term strategy for securing federal networks. It follows a 30-day rapid action plan initiated this summer to tighten online defenses in the wake of the massive Office of Personnel Management hack.
By Dec. 31, agencies are required to report to the White House the top five areas — network services, cyberthreat analysis, systems development, and others — where they lack sufficient personnel.
OMB and OPM plan to publish a first-ever governmentwide cybersecurity HR strategy in April.
“We still have the fundamentals wrong, and what I mean by that is there’s a major, major talent shortage inside the federal government today,” said Trevor Rudolph, the head of the cybersecurity unit with OMB, speaking Tuesday at a Carahsoft event produced by the custom events unit at Government Executive, parent company of Nextgov.
There are currently nearly 400 open information security positions posted on USAJobs.gov, Rudolph said. And those are just the open jobs specifically categorized as information security, he added.
“There are plenty of other jobs related to cybersecurity — acquisition professionals, lawyers, you name it — where we need this skill sets inside the government, and we can’t get them in at scale right now,” he said.
Rudolph’s boss, U.S. Chief Information Officer Tony Scott, previously estimated the government will need to fill about 10,000 openings for cyber professionals next year.
“This has been a long-neglected area…