Grant to promote cyber security

5 February 2015

Ryan Ko
Ryan Ko

Cyber security expert: University of Waikato's Dr Ryan Ko.

A $33,000 Education New Zealand grant will help promote New Zealand's only masters degree in cyber security throughout ASEAN markets and enable the University of Waikato to further develop partnerships with organisations in the region.

The grant was announced by Tertiary Education, Skills and Employment Minister Steven Joyce on 3 February as part of a $450,000 co-funding initiative through Education New Zealand towards 12 new growth initiatives in the international education industry.

The University of Waikato project is being led by the Dean of the Faculty of Computing and Mathematical Sciences Professor Geoff Holmes and also involves Te Piringa – Faculty of Law.

Increase profile of the University

Cyber security head Dr Ryan Ko says the latest funding will provide resources to help increase the profile of Waikato University in fast developing regions such as ASEAN, and enable students of the degree to serve an international market seeking cyber security professionals.

The University of Waikato launched the master of cyber security degree in late 2013 at the same time it opened the country's first cyber security lab. The initiatives are aimed to provide skilled cyber security professionals in one of the fastest growing IT sectors in the world.

Demand for cyber security

Demand for cyber security experts is growing at 3.5 times the pace of the overall IT job market and 12 times faster than the total labour market internationally. The cyber security market is expected to grow to $94 billion by 2017.

The University's cyber security initiatives already have strong industry support and in 2014 it received $12,223,770  from the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment's new science research funding.

That funding is for the STRATUS (Security Technologies Returning Accountability, Transparency and User-centric Services in the Cloud) project, a six-year cyber security project which it is hoped will provide a significant boost to New Zealand's fledgling cyber security industry, along with creating tools which will return control of cloud-based data to users.

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