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The Universal College of Learning (UCOL) has announced that it will offer the New Zealand Diploma in Cybersecurity from mid-February. With approximately ten billion internet-connected devices worldwide and the growing number of high-profile data breaches, the country increasingly needs to invest in data protection and storage.

UCOL, a New Zealand Government TEI (Polytechnic), will deliver the full-time, one-year Level 6 Diploma at its Manawatu campus with the Unitec Institute of Technology in Auckland, using their established curriculum and resources. According to a report, the program is eligible for free study under the government’s targeted training and apprenticeship fund until December 31.

The UCOL New Zealand Diploma in Cybersecurity will run from February 28 to November 27, with applications now open. Students will learn through a combination of in-person, online, and workplace learning. Learners will attend lectures given by UCOL staff and industry experts from organizations in the field of cybersecurity. The program will also include internships in industry, allowing students to use and develop their skills in the workplace.

The course will cover the fundamental concepts of information systems security, cyber law and regulation, cryptography, network security, security risk assessment, governance and cyber security practices , hacking and ethical testing and incident management. Students will learn how to identify, mitigate, and respond to cybersecurity risks and incidents, and help ensure the security, integrity, and availability of information and systems.

Major data breaches and denial of service attacks have become common, even in New Zealand. In 2021, several organisations, including New Zealand Post, Inland Revenue, MetService and Kiwibank, were targeted by attacks that took their websites offline or prevented customers from using their services. Industry experts have said that it is difficult to find suitably qualified cybersecurity personnel. There is a high demand, not only in New Zealand but also around the world. This qualification develops the skills people are looking for in industry.

According to a cybersecurity report, 59% of companies worldwide have vacancies in digital security, and it is predicted that there will be a global shortage of 3.5 million cybersecurity professionals by the end of 2022. Cybersecurity jobs can often be done remotely, meaning staff can work from anywhere in the world.

Last December, the Government Communications Security Bureau (GCSB) partnered with private sector cybersecurity vendors in an initiative to prevent millions of dollars in cyber damage. The cyber defense capability launched by the GCSB’s National Cyber ​​Security Center (NCSC) aims to make the center’s cyber threat intelligence available to commercial cyber security vendors to help defend their customers’ networks. GCSB Director General Andrew Hampton explained that the key to extending the benefits of NCSC’s cyber defense capabilities is to work in partnership with other cyber security vendors.

The Malware Free Networks (MFN) feature makes this possible, providing a platform to share indicators of malicious activity with security service providers so they can detect and disrupt this activity on their customers’ networks.

As OpenGov Asia reported, MFN is the NCSC’s threat detection and disruption service that provides near real-time threat intelligence reflecting current malicious activity targeting New Zealand organizations. The MFN Threat Intelligence Service can be integrated with other systems and platforms to increase the range of malicious activity against which MFN customers are defended. MFN complements commercial threat intelligence by detecting and disrupting indicators identified by NCSC’s advanced cyber defense capabilities and sourced from NCSC’s international cybersecurity partnerships.