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Certification Watch (Vol. 21, No. 19)

In this week's roundup of the latest IT certification news, Microsoft invites you to help shape the future of certification, CompTIA minds a gap in its certification training offerings, and more.

Microsoft Learning Wants YOU


Focus group with treatsAre you a certified IT professional, or at least an aspiring certified IT professional? Do you have opinions about certification and how it should be done? Do you just like to hear yourself talk and have a couple of hours to burn? Microsoft Learning is setting out to do nothing less than shape the future of certification, and there's a place at the table for those bold enough to claim it. Volunteers must be willing to participate in several virtual focus groups or interviews possibly taking up as much as one or two hours. Note: Microsoft Learning will not interview your directly. If you are chosen to participate, you will be contacted by a third party hired by Microsoft.


IT Can Make the World a Better Place for Rural Women and Girls


There's an ongoing conversation among technologists about the benefits to the overall tech profession and tech workforce of opening doors to women and bringing them into the global IT realm. An equally important, if somewhat less glamorous talking point is raised in a recent post the ISACA Now Blog of security and governance association ISACA. Guest blogger Jo Stewart-Rattray, chair of ISACA's Women's Leadership Council, lays out an impassioned argument about the difference that access to technology can make in the lives of rural women and girls. Living without technology not only curtails educational and professional opportunities, Stewart-Rattray contends, but makes rural women and girls more vulnerable to physical and sexual violence. Stewart-Rattray believes that tech companies should take an active interest in broadening the reach of technology.


So You Want to Be a Security Administrator


Over at the IT Career News blog of tech industry association CompTIA, there's a periodic series of career profile articles that runs under the heading "Your Next Move." The latest in the series, posted Monday, addresses the job title of Security Administrator. Among other identifying characteristics, blogger Jennifer Sherwood lists the following responsibilities that may be given to a security administrator:


● Defending systems against unauthorized access, modification and/or destruction
● Scanning and assessing network for vulnerabilities
● Monitoring network traffic for unusual activity
● Configuring and supporting security tools such as firewalls, anti-virus software and patch management systems
● Implementing network security policies, application security, access control and corporate data safeguards
● Training fellow employees in security awareness and procedures
● Developing and updating business continuity and disaster recovery protocols


The post also discusses the progression of training and education that an aspiring security administrator should undertake in order to succeed. It's a great read for anyone on the outside of the IT realm looking in who has a with a career interest in cybersecurity.