Australia, 08 March 2017: To coincide with International Women’s Day (IWD), the ACS – the professional association for Australia’s ICT sector – will today participate in the Women in Cyber event in Melbourne, an initiative of the Office of the Cyber Security Special Adviser within the Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet. Roundtable discussions will focus on the barriers to women choosing cyber careers, the reasons women leave the cyber industry and ways to address these problems.
The ACS has long been an advocate for advancing diversity in ICT to capture the full potential of the digital economy. Its 2015 Report, The Promise of Diversity, shows that Australia is a long way from filling the gender equality gap, particularly in ICT, where women comprise only 28 per cent of the ICT workforce compared to 43 per cent of the wider workforce.
The shortfall is particularly acute in technical roles in the cyber security area, which has risen to the top of the international agenda as high-profile security breaches raise concerns around the potential impact on the global economy. Data from SEEK Employment Trends Report suggest that the number of cyber security roles advertised in Australia grew by more than 57 per cent year-on-year in February 2016. The opportunities for women to forge a career in cyber are many.
Chair of ACS Victoria, Maria Markman said, “The ACS is pleased to support the Women in Cyber event and we congratulate the Office of the Cyber Policy Special Adviser on this important initiative.
“Addressing the barriers for women in ICT requires short and long-term initiatives, supported by genuine commitment by employers, educators and governments to collaboratively tackle these barriers. This event is a significant step forward.”
ACS Vice President, Yohan Ramasundara said, “Through committed, outcome-focused leadership the ACS is working to address the ICT gender disparity at all stages of women’s education and careers towards a more gender balanced world.
“The ACS values the contribution of women and promote gender equality in the Australian ICT sector. On International Women’s Day we celebrate the social, economic, cultural and political achievement of our female colleagues around the world. The theme for this year #BeBoldForChange is a call for everyone of us to stand up and do our bit to help achieve womens full potential for a more prosperous future for us all.”
About the ACS
The ACS is the professional association for Australia’s Information and Communication Technology (ICT) sector. Over 22,000 ACS members work in business, education, government and the community. The ACS exists to create the environment and provide the opportunities for members and partners to succeed. The ACS strives for ICT professionals to be recognised as drivers of innovation in our society, relevant across all sectors, and to promote the formulation of effective policies on ICT and related matters. Visit www.acs.org.au for more information.