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IT is no longer a support function, but an enabler

Pradipto Chakrabarty, Regional Director, CompTIA India

According to CompTIA traditional methods of information security practices such as firewalling and anti-virus are not protecting us anymore due to rapid proliferation of mobile devices and mobile computing, also endpoint is now the censors. The need of the hour is to create a strong line of defence through analytics and predictive methods. itVARnews in an exclusive interaction with Pradipto Chakrabarty, Regional Director, CompTIA India finds out more on the data security trends 2017  (here goes the excerpts) –

1. Data Security is as Crucial as National  Security, what is CompTIA doing  to protect it

Through repeated messages, the Government is expressing their worry on the threat to cyber security in all walks of life. Our Defense Minister recently warned that wars in the future will be fought in cyberspace.  In this context, it is important to realize the importance of cyber security and what it means for our country’s defense, economic fabric and progress. In my opinion, creating a cyber-safe India is not only the responsibility of specialized professionals in the Government, defense establishments and enterprises, but also the common “netizens”. One of the key parameters to decide on the Information security posture of enterprises accessing huge amount of sensitive information is skill availability within the country.

CompTIA analyzes and identifies the global trends in cybersecurity and creates programs aimed to develop skills of people at multiple levels. Through the CyberSecure™ Program, CompTIA aims at spreading awareness among IT users regarding practices of cyber safety. Apart from this, CompTIA has also developed certification programs such as Security+™, CSA+™ and CASP™ to train the working professionals on fundamental, intermediate and advanced level InfoSec technology. Through these programs, CompTIA addresses the knowledge requirements of all the levels of workforce.

2 . How do you think specialised certifications will add value add for high skilled workforce?

Industry standard specialized certifications are a definite means to add specific skillsets to the workforce. The key to this are twofold, firstly they create a skill benchmark against which the workforce can map themselves on a global level and secondly it drastically reduces the time consuming process of on the job learning, in which the knowledge gain is not very measurable. Most certifications, either vendor neutral or vendor specific are created in such a manner that the content is extremely structured and are generally mapped to clear job roles.

3. What initiatives have CompTIA’s taken in CSA+ Program provision for the IT industry?

Based on the trends of information and cyber security, we discovered that one of the key aspect of data security today is “behavioural analytics” which means that professionals should be able to analyse threat incidences, detect and mitigate the risks. Therefore the CSA+ program has been designed to cover “security analytics” skills which include Threat management, Vulnerability analysis, Cyber incident response and security architecture tool sets.

4. In your opinion, what information security trends will dominate the market in 2017.

There are some very interesting trends that CompTIA observed while studying thecurrent information technology situation. It is clear that traditional methods of information security practices such as firewalling and anti-virus are not protecting us anymore. With the rapid proliferation of mobile computing, social networks, cloud and IoT, the threat surface has increased dramatically. Long gone are the days when we could say that a firewall typically demarcates our security perimeter. The “end point” has radically changed in ten years. It is no longer really a PC. The “end point” is now the sensors on many personal items, thanks to IoT and the many devices we now own and carry around.In my opinion we will see some of the most potent methods of intrusion catching pace such as APT (Advanced Persistent Threat) and DDoS (Distributed Denial of Services). Hackers have extremely justifiable incentives to capture or destroy sensitive data which prompts them to work on new methods continually. The best we can do is create a strong line of defence through analytics and predictive methods.

5. How do you think the Indian government’s Digital India push will be a boost for the IT industry? Which sectors will benefit the most from it? 

The rapid shift towards a digital society is inevitable and desirable since IT is no longer a support function, but an enabler. Under this situation, the Government should definitely push for proliferating the concept of creating a digital society. One of the clear beneficiary will be the youth of the country who will get a chance for employment in all segments of the industry as IT professionals. It is tough to point out a specific sector that will benefit most out of this push as being a business enabler, IT will be crucial for the sustenance for each and every industry sector.

 6. IT certifications help to create industry ready professionals, how does CompTIA help?

For over two decades, CompTIA has been investing in creating industry standard vendor technology neutral certifications for the IT workforce. One of the biggest lacuna that we face today is the prevalent skill gap. University education is often found to be lacking towards bridging the gap between acquired knowledge and practical industry requirement. Certifications help bridge this gap since certification developers are flexible to address the concept of technology obsolescence much faster that the academic curriculum.

7. How will these help to transform India into a knowledge economy ?

Skilled and certified workforce is the key to developing intellectual capital of the country. When the workforce is at par with industry requirements, naturally the skill gap is reduced. This prompts workers to think out of the box and indulge with experiment thereby resulting to a huge body of knowledge which benefits the ecosystem. In the long run this body of knowledge leads to creation of an economy pivoted on innovation.

8. What is CompTIA doing to create standards and certifications for Make in India ?

The critical success factor for the Government’s make in India initiative will be the speed and veracity with which mass skill development programs are executed. Since this initiative will attract global business as indications are alreadypointing, the expectations from the investors will be a globally acceptable standards of manpower skillsets attested by certifications. All CompTIA’s technology certifications are created following a thorough analysis of job tasks, so the skills acquired through these certifications are transferable across geographies. Therefore a CompTIA certified professional will be at par with global standards as the certification process and content are synchronous across the World.

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