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Dearth of 3.5 Million Professionals in Cyber Domain, Says US Expert

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM:
“As we are gearing up for embracing digital age, the challenge we face is dearth of talent, and it can be overcome by providing excellent facilities for research and academia,” said Dr Guy Diedrich, Vice President and Global Innovation Officer, Cisco Systems, USA.

“Today, we are short of 3.5 million professionals with skills in the cyber domain. All of the great ideas and innovations come from research and academia,” the US expert noted.

Dr Diedrich was delivering a keynote address at the inaugural ceremony of the third International Conference on Computing and Network Communications (CoCoNet’19), organized by Indian Institute of Information Technology and Management-Kerala (IIITM-K) from December 18-21, on its new campus in Technocity at Pallipuram near here.

“Digital age is all about connecting people and things. Cisco has about 70 per cent of the world’s traffic passing through its equipment. We stalk 20 billion cyber attacks per day,” he said, adding that it’s getting worse.

“Cyber attackers don’t acknowledge borders. We have to create a unified security approach globally. Each individual technology doesn’t talk to the other. We need to create a long chain of individual links that don’t connect,” Dr Diedrich said.

Noting that cyber attacks are global and pervasive, he said there are now 27 billion connected things.By 2030, there will be 500 billion connected things. And in 2022, there will be more data created than in 32 years previously combined.

“Security is no longer going to be allowed to sit around the outside of applications. That’s our big flaw right now. Security has to be embedded in the network. As part of the acceleration digital programme in 32 countries, we try to create a global network of protection and access,” he added.

M Sivasankar, IT Secretary, Govt. of Kerala, who inaugurated the conference, said primarily, India’s role in the globally emerging knowledge economy will be the talent pool, which the country is going to provide.

“IIITM-K and Kerala have taken a lot of efforts to ensure that we have the right talent and skill set to steer the globe and the larger humankind into the industry 4.0 knowledge economy regime that is going to unfold in the next few years. So, we have identified five or six areas, including blockchain and space technology applications. Cutting across all these centres of excellence themes is cyber security, for which IIITM-K is giving more focus,” he noted.

In his welcome address, Dr Saji Gopinath, Director, IIITM-K, said the conference will be an opportunity to understand the current trends in the industry and academia. “It also provides rich seeds for the further research and huge opportunity for professional networking for all of us to hone our skills, and further explore collaborative research and move forward.”

Prof. Raj Jain, Professor of Computer Science and Engineering, Washington University in St. Louis; Prof. Ravi Sandhu, Executive Director and Chief Scientist, Institute for Cyber Security (ICS), and Professor of Computer Science, University of Texas at San Antonio, USA; and Mr Sabu M Thampi, Professor, IIITM-K also spoke. Dr Elizabeth Sherly, Professor, IIITM-K, proposed a vote of thanks.

The International Conference on Applied Soft Computing and Communication Network (ACN’19) is also being held along with CoCoNet’19, organized in association with ACM Trivandrum Professional Chapter.

CoCoNet’19 provides a platform for researchers, engineers, academicians as well as industrial professionals from all over the world to present their research results and development activities in Computing and Network Communications.

CoCoNet’19 and ACN’19 together feature almost 15 symposiums. As part of the conference, a panel discussion has been planned on Friday by the Women in Computing (WCI), highlighting the importance of women empowerment. On the fourth day, the conference will conclude with a workshop organized by the Kerala Blockchain Academy (KBA) at IIITM-K, Technopark campus, Thiruvananthapuram.

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