THE recent cyber attacks reported worldwide have convinced the local academe and the private sector of the need to develop a comprehensive curriculum to produce a substantial pool of skilled cybersecurity experts to handle security infrastructure in the knowledge economy.
In response to the need for developing the talent in cybersecurity, the Tanco family-controlled iAcademy recently announced it will offer a BS Computer Science in Cloud Computing in the next school year,
Dr. Mitch Andaya, the vice president of academics and dean of the School of Computing of iAcademy, told the BusinessMirror they will offer the course to its students once the Commission on Higher Education (CHED) approves it.
“We plan to offer the four-year program to our students, which will have majors in cyber security and Big Data analytics,” said Andaya in a recent interview held in the school’s Makati City campus.
Andaya said iAcademy’s move is in response to the trends in the digital economy where issues on hacking and network security breaches are growing bigger on a regular basis.
“We are aware cybersecurity is the next big issue not only in the country, but around the world,” he said.
Andaya said the Philippines will benefit from this development, as countries around the world will need skilled workers in cybersecurity. He said this could be the new outsourcing form the country must look forward into because students and business-process outsourcing workers can move up the value chain.
iAcademy assistant principal for senior high school Mel Obedoza said the school is attuned to the needs of the industry by adopting an education model designed for the drastically different demands of the digital age.
“Meaningful learning is attained when there is a purpose behind it, more so when students discover that purpose themselves. We challenge the students to solve real-world problems in our community through our project-based learning,” she said.
Obedoza said application, not theory; simulation, not isolation; mentoring, not teaching is the approach that the school will use for senior high school and college students to enable students to learn in conditions as real as possible.
“Our courses are designed by people still connected to the industry. This connection allows us to be up to date and know what the industry is looking for at the time,” said Peter Brown of iAcademy’s animation program who proudly added that 95 percent of those in his department are current industry professionals.
Meanwhile, Nilesh Jain, vice president in Southeast Asia and India of Trend Micro, said data breaches and violations continue to grow despite regulations.
In a report, the Privacy Rights Clearinghouse said there were 259 breaches in the first half of 2018 as compared to 224 in the second half of 2017. The study also pointed out there were 15 mega breaches that resulted in exposing more than 1 million records, as compared to 6 in the second half of 2017.
Meanwhile, the National Privacy Commission reported 57 breaches in the Philippines from January to May 2018. Jain urged companies to adopt the best practices against data privacy. These are classify high-value assets of core data, know the indicators of compromise (IoCs) of known attacks, secure all sections of the IT supply chain, patch and update systems regularly and comply with regulatory standards. Although newly discovered vulnerabilities have increased, Jain warned old ones are just effective.
Ian Felipe, Philippines country manager of Trend Micro, said its Philippine office functions as the global technical support and research and development headquarters of the parent company, with focus on threat and incident response and solutions delivery. Aside from being one of the major threat research facilities all over the world, the Philippine office serves as the backbone of the company’s service infrastructure.