Minorities In Cyber. PHOTO: Cybercrime Magazine

Underserved Communities Lack Awareness Of The Cybersecurity Field

ICMCP was established in 2014 to tackle the “great cyber divide”

 – Hillarie McClure, Multimedia Director

Portland, Maine – Oct. 7, 2020

I recently spoke with Larry Whiteside Jr., co-founder and president of the International Consortium for Minority Cybersecurity Professionals (ICMCP), on Cybercrime Radio.

Whiteside is a former U.S. Air Force officer, has held the title of CISO at multiple enterprises, and, in addition to his work with the ICMCP, is CTO at CyberClan.

“I didn’t know about computers until the 11th grade.” Whiteside shares how his moving to a part of town that had a higher concentration of white homeowners resulted in receiving an education that exposed him to the latest technology. Were it not for this move and attending a new high school, Whiteside affirms that he would not be where he is today, as he never would have been introduced to computers.

Cybercrime TV: Larry Whiteside, Jr., Co-Founder & President of ICMCP

Taking on the mission

Based on his experiences and career in the cybersecurity industry, Whiteside states, “I look at the field of cybersecurity, especially for minorities and underserved communities, as a socio-economic change agent.” How is that exactly?

The cybersecurity industry has the right mix of three ingredients that create opportunity for underserved communities: 1) an overall lack of diversity; 2) a projection of 3.5 million unfilled jobs globally by 2021; and 3) incredible sustained growth, with global spending on cyber exceeding $1 trillion from 2017 to 2021.

One of the biggest challenges is that those underserved communities lack awareness of the cybersecurity field.

In order to help remedy this problem, Whiteside and his co-founders established the ICMCP in 2014 with the mission of achieving consistent representation of women and minorities in the cybersecurity industry through programming designed to foster recruitment, inclusion, and retention, tackling the “great cyber divide.”

Listen to the interview with Whiteside to learn more about how he and the ICMCP are working together to engage companies and top-tier cyber talent to help bridge that divide. “We’ve got real, real powerful organizations and people that are really taking on this mission, recognizing the importance of it, and are giving of their time to try and make a difference.”

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Hillarie McClure is Multimedia Director at Cybercrime Magazine