By Steve Lipner, Executive Director



This week, the National Initiative for Cybersecurity Education (NICE), led by the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) within the U.S. Department of Commerce is hosting National Cybersecurity Career Awareness Week (NCCAW). The goal is to focus on local, regional, and national interest to inspire, educate, and engage children through adults to pursue careers in cybersecurity. National Cybersecurity Career Awareness Week takes place during November’s National Career Development Month and provides a chance to highlight contributions, innovations, and opportunities that can be found by exploring cybersecurity as a field of study or career choice.

SAFECode would like to thank NIST for taking a leadership role in promoting interest in cybersecurity careers, as well as all those individuals and organizations hosting cybersecurity career events and other learning opportunities this week.

We’d also like to use this week to pause our regular programming on promoting effective software security methods to highlight the cybersecurity career path closest to our hearts – careers in software security. We know that software security or secure application development might not be the first thing that comes to mind when one thinks of a cybersecurity career, but it is a great option for those interested in creating technology and building software who want to make a positive contribution to society and their employers.

In fact, some of the most effective product security team members I have worked with were previously technical program managers, developers or testers who uncovered an interest in security in the course of their work. Some may have participated in a bug bash or hackathon and found some interesting (and important) bugs. Some may have uncovered a talent for threat modeling or found themselves informally mentoring their peers on security issues. Most of them shared a common interest in solving complex problems and found software security to be an opportunity to share their skill for applying their unique brand of thinking.

So if you are a current software developer, tester or program manager who has maybe thought about a career in software in security — or if you are just starting out in technology and want to combine your love of creating stuff with a desire to make a positive impact —or, well, anything in between – we encourage you to follow along with @safecode and @NISTcyber this week to learn a bit more about careers in cybersecurity.