Network athletes compete to form a U.S. network team


Here is how security experts demonstrate value to future employers: a friendly field of struggle to measure their ability against competitors.

Simply creating a diverse pipeline of cyber security professionals is not enough. In order for the United States to fight future cyber threat actors and complex attacks, we must attract, train, and retain keen cyber professionals who can innovate, collaborate, and operate with keen intuition, situational awareness, and practical technology. The Internet as a sport is critical to developing these skills and why we recruit online athletes, coaches, and sponsors to build the first ever American online team.

Imagine a world where cyber professionals equate their skills and abilities with the MITRE ATT&CK and NICE cyber security workforce framework.

When it comes to the cybersecurity workforce, we are all working hard to recruit “excellent people.” In an industry based on data analysis and anomalies, this description is ironic. Many companies roll the dice when hiring based on interviews and resumes, with almost no actual measurement of skills and abilities.

The rapid digital change and agility required to survive in today’s market cannot yet be solved by technology. Our cyber security team provides an active human defense layer to discern the criticality from noise, determine whether our shield will be maintained, or need to take a response action, and decide what action to take and how quickly.

In addition to possessing the necessary skills and knowledge (NICE framework) required for job duties, “talented” cyber security professionals also understand the common strategies, techniques and procedures (TTP) (MITRE ATT&CK) of cyber attackers, even without experience. Traditionally, this unique blend comes from hard-won experience and at least five years of apprenticeship.

Online games and tournaments greatly reduce these times by simulating attack experience, revealing how attack indicators are displayed on the network in real time, and helping us to understand which responses are effective and ineffective through collaboration. Online games provide a fun and safe place for hackers and hone key skills.

Imagine that the iterative melting pot of competition shapes the pipeline of the security team and creates a series of challenges to demonstrate network skills. Cyber ​​athletes now have a way to prove their worth to future employers in a quantifiable way: a friendly field of struggle to measure their ability against other competitors. The first-person shooter honed the skills of future combatants. The cyber movement has created a collaborative approach to attract and inspire the next generation of cyber professionals.

Competitive achievement success
Our industry faces the test of whether we have the required conditions every day. What about tomorrow?

As Theodore Roosevelt said, we must face the challenges of this generation bravely. It’s time to recognize our best performance in the field of cyber security trade. As an American, what better way than exercise? The e-sports market is booming:

● Mordor Intelligence reports that, driven by the pandemic, the e-sports market is expected to have a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 20% from now to 2026.

● As stated in GrandViewResearch’s latest industry report, the video game industry is changing rapidly, with a large number of tournaments attracting millions of fans and attracting sponsors and investments from international brands.

● According to Newzoo, the global game market generated USD 177.8 billion in 2020, and global streaming game revenue is expected to increase by 73.6% in 2021.

This environment is ideally suited to capitalize on the growing interest and participation in e-sports to increase interest in the cybersecurity profession. E-sports can promote teamwork and audience fans more than traditional online tournaments, which helps to expand its value, energy and influence. By combining gaming abilities and skills with cyber security, our community can accelerate training and skills development to help cultivate a “network-ready” workforce to resist attacks.

This is why we are forming the first ever US cyber team to participate in the International Cyber ​​Security Challenge (ICSC). It’s time to establish a continuous online security game method to update our talent pool and ensure the longevity of senior online professionals.

Elite cyber athletes race to join the U.S. cyber team
It was announced in April that the U.S. online game is a months-long competition to find 20 elite U.S. online professional players between the ages of 18 and 26. They will win a place in the first ever U.S. online team and represent the United States Participate in international online competitions in Greece. To win one of these coveted places, athletes will advance through multiple competition levels. We need fans, coaches, players and supporters of cybersecurity.

Online games are not just entertainment activities, they also promote the development of a diversified and high-quality network security talent community. Katzcy (PlayCyber​​) and the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST)’s National Cyber ​​Security Education Initiative (NICE) program for online games in the United States are achieving this goal. By becoming a coach (click here), a sponsor (click here) and a communicator (click here), help us send the first American cyber team to compete on the world stage of the International Cyber ​​Security Challenge.

Jessica Gulick is a commissioner of the U.S. Online Gaming Council, a multi-stage cybersecurity program that recruits U.S. cyber teams; Katzcy is the CEO of a female-owned growth strategy and marketing company; and, The founder of PlayCyber​​, a new business line that promotes online games and… View full bio

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