25 March 2019 — Pushing the integration of cybersecurity in the academe to increase the country’s cybersecurity professionals, the Department of Information and Communications Technology (DICT) joined hands with AMA Computer University Inc. in promoting institutional cooperation in cybersecurity courses.

DICT Acting Secretary Eliseo Rio Jr. led the signing ceremony of the Memorandum of Understanding together with AMA President Felizardo Colambo on Friday, 22 March.

“Higher education institutions can help address this issue by creating initiatives to educate students and professionals to train the next generation of cyber-warriors,” Rio said.

Rio added the necessity of the initiative in the country as there are only 84 certified information security systems professionals as of 2018, and almost half of them work overseas, lagging behind ASEAN neighbors like Indonesia, Thailand, Malaysia, and Singapore.

AMA is the first academic institution to partner with DICT, which is in line with its partnership with the Commission of Higher Education (CHED) to promote a bachelor degree on Cybersecurity.

Assistant Secretary on Cybersecurity and Emerging Technologies Allan Cabanlong said a series of consultations will take place this year before CHED will release memorandum for the proposed program.

“Building a cybersecurity workforce to meet current and future needs begins with educating a broader generation of future practitioners. The government and the academe should partner in investing in programs to ensure that cybersecurity education at every level of the education system is available, accessible, and aligned both to the needs of the cybersecurity workforce and to emerging cybersecurity challenges,” Cabanlong said.

The integration of Cybersecurity in the academe is under Key Imperative 4 of the National Cybersecurity Plan (NCSP) 2022 – the national roadmap for securing the Philippine cyberspace.