Cisco to train 500,000 cybersecurity professionals in India over 3 years

Daisy Chittilapilly, President, Cisco India and SAARC.

Networking major Cisco on Tuesday announced its goal to train 500,000 people with cybersecurity skills over the next 3 years, across India.

This goal is part of Cisco’s 10-year ambition to empower 25 million people with digital skills worldwide through Cisco’s Networking Academy. The flagship program is celebrating its 25th anniversary this year.  During this time, the program has reached 17.5 million students across 190 countries.

Since starting operations in India, it has trained 1.2 million students through 718 partnerships with educational institutions and organizations offering Networking Academy courses.

The announcement was made at the Cisco India Summit 2023 in Jaipur, where the company showcased its investments and innovations to build a new benchmark of trust for the digital world.

The future of India’s growth and global competitiveness depends on building a strong digital economy which in turn relies on a digitally skilled workforce. The Indian government is expecting to create 10 million jobs from the digital economy over the next two years. With the speed and scale of digitisation across the country, there will be an increased demand for skilled cybersecurity professionals as organisations look to defend themselves against an evolving and complex threat landscape.

Cisco also released its first-ever Cybersecurity Readiness Index at the Cisco India Summit. 90% of respondents surveyed said they expect a cybersecurity incident to disrupt their business in the next 12 to 24 months. Cisco said it aspires to equip India’s students with the career-ready technical skills required to meet the ever-growing security needs of tomorrow.

Expanding the scope of its Networking Academy program, the company intends to impart cybersecurity skills to half a million individuals by the end of fiscal 2025. This builds on the Networking Academy’s efforts in the country. Additionally, 95% of surveyed students who took Cisco certification aligned courses have either obtained a job opportunity and/or an opportunity to further advance their education, Cisco said.

“As technology becomes all-pervasive, India’s vision for a prosperous and inclusive future will be rooted in digital trust. To make this happen, a skilling revolution, especially in cybersecurity, is vital,” said Daisy Chittilapilly, President, Cisco India and SAARC. “Today, we are doubling down on our commitment to help build future-ready workforces through the Networking Academy program. We aim to empower India’s youth to leverage the cyber opportunities emerging in the hybrid, digital-first world.”

Cisco Networking Academy’s mission is to enable an equitable and inclusive workforce on a global scale. Founded in 1997, it continues to be one of the longest-standing IT skills-to-jobs programs in the world.

“Amidst the ever-changing threat landscape, the need to invest in cybersecurity skilling and develop the next generation of security leaders has never been greater. For 25 years, the Cisco Networking Academy has been empowering learners worldwide. India has always been and continues to be a critical talent hub for us, and we are proud to expand our training and education opportunities to provide its people the digital skills necessary to build an inclusive future for all,” said Laura Quintana, Vice President, and General Manager, Cisco Networking Academy.

Daisy Chittilapilly, President, Cisco India and SAARC.
Daisy Chittilapilly, President, Cisco India and SAARC.