York College to offer cyber security upskilling apprenticeships

Call for employers follows massive investment into state-of-the-art cyber lab

York College has opened its doors to employers who want to improve their cyber security posture by upskilling employees.

The college has partnered with the Yorkshire & Humber Institute of Technology to invest £60,000 into a state-of-the-art cyber security lab with a virtualised working environment, which offers students Level 4 Cyber Security Technologist apprenticeship training.

The apprenticeship will focus on security design and architecture, penetration testing, investigating and how to respond to a cyber attack. Students will learn how to apply an understanding of cyber threats to help protect organisations, systems and individuals. The course will also look at reducing the risk of attacks and unauthorised access to systems and networks.

York College, which has seen a surge in demand for cyber security courses from students, is now looking for businesses to help support the apprenticeship with opportunities for employment, as well as enrol their own employees as part of an upskilling programme.

"The college's new cyber security lab is the ideal educational environment in which to develop the knowledge and skills required to secure modern IT infrastructures," said David McNorton, head of digital technologies at York College.

"The British Computer Society's Level 4 Cyber Security Technologist apprenticeship provides businesses in the area with the opportunity to ensure they have staff who can meet and defeat threats to their IT security."

It's estimated that some 100,000 cyber security jobs could go unfilled in the UK by 2022, according to figures from the Global Information Security Workforce. This was matched by a survey from cyber security consultancy ReadSeal which said the UK's skills gap was widening.

Respondents to RedSeal's survey cited uncertainty around Brexit, with 87% of CIOs and senior IT professionals reporting that they're struggling to find cyber security professionals with the expertise needed to combat serious and organised online crime.

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