Microsoft is launching a campaign to bolster the cybersecurity workforce, President Brad Smith announced via Microsoft's blog on Thursday. Microsoft will work alongside community colleges across the nation to help train and recruit 250,000 workers into cybersecurity roles by 2025.
The company claims that number represents half of the workforce shortage in the sector. And they estimate that 6 percent of open jobs require some level of cybersecurity skills. While not all of the individuals hired through the campaign will work for Microsoft, the company is intending to hire some.
The cybersecurity talent shortage comes on the heels of a Microsoft report released earlier this month, where the company found that cyberattacks from foreign non-state actors were increasing in frequency and effectiveness. "Foreign governments have tampered with the software supply chain, targeted on-premise servers, and hacked into sensitive government files," Smith wrote. "We recognize that no one has a higher responsibility to address cybersecurity threats than leading tech companies."
Microsoft worked with 14 community colleges across six states to develop an approach for the campaign. The company's commitment will offer a cybersecurity curriculum free of charge to 4,000 higher education institutions, provide training to faculty at 150 community colleges and provide scholarships and resources to 25,000 students.