OAS Unveils WiCE Network for Female Cybersecurity Pros


The Organization of American States (OAS) launched a new initiative to empower women in cybersecurity, known as the WiCE (Women in Cybersecurity Empowerment) Network, in an event held at OAS headquarters in Washington, D.C.

The network, created by the Cyber Security Program of the OAS Inter-American Committee against Terrorism (CICTE), is designed to foster a gender-sensitive and inclusive regional cybersecurity culture, promoting the empowerment of women+ in ICT and working to close the gender gap that compromises cyberspace security. The network includes the participation of key leaders such as the Executive Secretary of CICTE/OAS Alison August Treppel; the Director of Cyber, Digital and Emerging Technologies Policy at Global Affairs Canada, Kelly Anderson; and the Executive Secretary of the Inter-American Commission on Women (CIM) of the OAS, Alejandra Mora Mora.

"Women in their diversity face unique threats in the context of cybersecurity. By incorporating more women, diversity, and gender perspectives into the field, we can address these challenges more effectively, creating solutions that reduce the gendered impacts on women's lives and enhance the industry's overall effectiveness and sustainability," said August Treppel during the launch.

For her part, Anderson said "We look forward to continually incorporating more women, their voices, and experiences to develop better cybersecurity solutions that consider the gendered impacts of cyber risk, ultimately contributing to the industry's effectiveness and sustainability."

The initiative is a key component of the Cyber project, "Closing the Gender Gap in the Cybersecurity Agenda of the Americas and the Caribbean," implemented by the CICTE/OAS Cybersecurity Program with funding from the Government of Canada. It is backed by over 150 women from the private sector, public sector, academia, and digital rights organizations, all of whom recognize the need for a new regional cybersecurity culture based on respect, inclusion, and equality.

In a traditionally male-dominated field where women make up only 24% of the workforce (according to ICS2), WiCE is founded on principles of empowerment and sisterhood. The network aims to drive structural change in the industry by creating a platform for women to collaborate, share knowledge, and support each other. This collaborative effort seeks to balance the distribution of opportunities and resources within the cybersecurity sector.

Cybersecurity professionals interested in joining the WiCE network can find more information here and register to the WiCE network through this form.

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