DHS Announces Onboarding of Hundreds of New Cybersecurity Professionals
The Department of Homeland Security has added nearly 300 new cybersecurity professionals to its ranks, with 500 tentative jobs still up for grabs.
The massive hiring campaign was launched in early May as part of the agency’s 60-day cybersecurity workforce sprint.
Initially, the plan was to hire 200 new cyber employees by July 1. Given the number of new hires, DHS said it was able to surpass that goal by almost 50 percent.
According to DHS Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas, a 2021 Wash100 winner, the agency is looking to establish diverse talent pipelines and ensure equitable access to professional development opportunities at every level.
“The Department’s 60-day Cybersecurity Workforce Sprint has enabled DHS to fill 12 percent of our more than 2,000 cybersecurity vacancies during a time when our country is facing extraordinary cyber threats,” Mayorkas said.
Another upcoming DHS recruitment initiative is aimed at training recent graduates with degrees in cybersecurity-related fields. Participants who complete the planned Honors Program will be up for permanent, full-time cybersecurity jobs at the agency.
The push to fill the cybersecurity talent gap comes amid recent high-profile cyber incidents across the U.S., including the SolarWinds hack and the ransomware attack on Colonial Pipeline.
Lawmakers have also recognized the increasing threat posed by malicious actors on government networks.
Newly introduced legislation called the Federal Cybersecurity Workforce Expansion Act proposes the establishment of cyber workforce apprenticeship programs within the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency and the Department of Veterans Affairs.
Sen. John Cornyn, who co-sponsored the bill, said having a workforce ready to fend off cyberattacks is a necessity given the evolving cyber threats that the country is facing.
Category: Federal Civilian
Tags: Alejandro Mayorkas cybersecurity professionals Cybersecurity Workforce Sprint Department of Homeland Security DHS federal civilian hiring initiative Honors Program