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Is cyber a man's world?
Cyber security still has an out-dated image of being a masculine profession. Charlotte Roe, Cyber Security Apprentice at NHS Digital, talks about her job and why women are needed in the world of cyber.
21 October 2019
Without cyber security professionals, the planet would be in chaos. Information is power, and criminals know that if they hack into our ICT devices, they can control or disrupt many aspects of our lives. NHS Digital goes to great lengths to protect patients’ data and to keep the systems that frontline staff rely on operating securely
When I started my apprenticeship, cyber security sounded mysterious. I struggled at first to understand it, but soon realised that it was all about problem-solving and detective work – both things that I love doing.
I’ve had several different job titles during my apprenticeship, including Infrastructure Specialist, Network Engineer, Operational Security Officer and Junior information Analyst. I’ve also had opportunities to work with security consultants and project managers. Moving around NHS Digital has given me the chance to find my feet, learn what I enjoy and understand why cyber security is so vital in healthcare.
I want to encourage other women to join cyber for three reasons:
Having greater diversity in cyber security teams enables problems to be viewed and tackled from different angles.
However, it’s not just a gender balance that the NHS is keen to strike. I have dyslexia, which is often viewed as a disability. Although reading, writing and speaking can be affected in people with dyslexia, intelligence is not.
Dyslexic brains tend to be more creative and better at visualising and picking up on patterns and trends quicker than non-dyslexic brains. This means that if you’re mechanic, you can better visualise a piece of machinery, or if you are a cyber analyst, you can better pick up on trends and patterns in code.
Being dyslexic isn’t a disability, but a different ability.
Having greater diversity in cyber security teams enables problems to be viewed and tackled from different angles. By having a range of skills in the team, we can better prepare for anything that may come our way.
The Keep I.T. Confidential campaign aims to educate NHS staff on the direct impact that data and cyber security has on patient safety and care. Find out more about the campaign.
NHS Digital's Peter Robinson takes us through his journey from apprentice to professional within the Cyber Security team.
Hackers and cyber attacks feature in many films and television programmes, but are these portrayals accurate? Hecham Mrabet, cyber security specialist at NHS Digital, gives us a behind-the-scenes look at how a cyber security centre runs in real life.