Oliver 13 0 0 4 min to read

The government is urged to employ STEM students as cyber security specialists.

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Senator Sherwin Gatchalian stated on Thursday that the government should recruit more STEM students and train them to become future technology specialists who may fill the nation’s dearth of cybersecurity professionals.

Gatchalian made the call in response to reports from Department of Information and Communications Technology (DICT) Secretary John Ivan Uy that, despite the Philippines’ susceptibility to cybercrime, there were only 200 certified cybersecurity experts in the nation as of today, compared to 3,000 in Singapore.

Despite the fact that DICT has been providing short-course training programs in software engineering and cybersecurity, Gatchalian emphasized the importance of nurturing skills beginning in early education.

The head of the Senate Committee on Basic Education, Gatchalian, stated that “even in our basic education system, where we might theoretically foster the talent moving into cybersecurity, it’s basically nonexistent.”

The need for more students to enroll in senior high schools’ STEM programs, where prospective cybersecurity skills can be acquired, was also emphasized by Gatchalian.

Only 612,857 senior high school students, or roughly 16 percent of senior high school enrolment, he claimed were enrolled in the STEM strand.

“When it comes to coding, for instance, I believe it should be introduced as early as junior high school level so that students will be exposed and by the time they reach senior high school, they can actually perform more complicated information technology-related activities. They can already specialize when they enroll in college, according to Gatchalian.

In order to establish a math and science high school in each of the nation’s provinces, Gatchalian introduced Senate Bill No. 476, also known as the Equitable Access to Math and Science Education Act.

The Philippines is the fourth most targeted nation by cybercriminals, according to a report released early this year by cybersecurity firm Kaspersky Security Network. For 2021, the Philippines saw more than 50 million web threat attempts blocked.

The same analysis showed that from 2017 to 2021, the number of cyber threats discovered in the Philippines increased dramatically by 433%.

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