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Trend Micro works towards bridging Cybersecurity Skills Gap

Capture the Flag trains teams in vital skills for security professionals

There is a growing need for cybersecurity professionals globally, and young professionals need practical experience to hone the skills required to fill this void. Trend Micro recognizes this need, and recently hosted its third annual Capture the Flag competition to support critical skill development by solving real-world cybersecurity challenges. This year’s competition was won by team Egfr33ks who successfully deciphered challenges that tested players’ skills in various categories, such as targeted attacks, Internet of Things (IoT), Industrial Control Systems (ICS) and Supervisory Control and Data Acquisition (SCADA).

According to a report from Gartner, 59 percent of surveyed companies have an urgent need for a security analyst and “the unemployment rate for cybersecurity professionals is zero.”2 Trend Micro CTF – Raimund Genes Cup 2017 aims to empower young professionals with practical skills in the most demanding areas of today’s cybersecurity landscape. Players earn valuable real-world experience that can be used in job interviews and daily challenges faced in the workplace.

“We want to help decrease the skills shortage that impacts organizations globally, as well as continuing to make the world safer for the exchange of digital information,” said Eva Chen, chief executive officer for Trend Micro. “The challenges posed in this competition represent the future of the cybersecurity landscape. We hope the skills learned here will be used to protect internet users from the greatest areas of emerging threats.”

In this year’s Capture the Flag, 1,431 teams from 91 countries and regions participated in the online qualifier in June, with the top 10 teams and an invited team moving on to the finals in Tokyo, Japan. The winners receive 1,000,000JPY (nearly 10,000USD), automatic qualification for the HITCON CTF 2017 final, and 15,000 Zero Day Initiative (ZDI) reward points, which enable vulnerability researchers to earn more rewards when submitting to the ZDI program.

Trend Micro has several global initiatives that support cybersecurity education and skills development. These have impacted more than 10,000 schools and 1 million children, parents, and teachers worldwide to teach online safety from a young age and inspire future security professionals to begin on this career path.

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