The Girls Scouts USA (GSUSA) is set to offer badges on cybersecurity, amid growing concerns that women are still being deprived of opportunities to enter the industry.

Citing the Computing Technology Industry Association, it said that some 69% of US women without a career in IT have stated that a lack of knowledge surrounding the opportunities available to them as a key setback in pursuing such a career.

A report earlier in the year suggested that women occupy just 11% of positions within the global cybersecurity workforce, seemingly confirming the lack of opportunities available to young women and girls.

As a result, GSUSA has teamed up with Palo Alto Networks in order to deliver a new national badge system that aims to help give its members the skills needed to meet potential future cybersecurity challenges.

The 18 new badges, which will be made available to girls aged from five to 12 years old, will be launched in September 2018.

It is hoped the new initiative will help reach out to millions of girls across the US, with organizers aiming to offer compelling programming designed to increase interest and instil a rich and thorough understanding of the skills needed in the digital landscape of the 21st century.

The drive will also look at helping over a million American girls develop skills around problem-solving and leadership.

Commenting on the partnership with Palo Alto, GSUSA CEO Sylvia Acevedo said: “We recognize that in our increasingly tech-driven world, future generations must possess the skills to navigate the complexities and inherent challenges of the cyber-realm.

“From arming our older girls with the tools to address this reality to helping younger girls protect their identities via Internet safety, the launch of our national cybersecurity badge initiative represents our advocacy of cyber-preparedness.”

Source: WeLiveSecurity