How UW Health's CISO approaches cybersecurity recruitment

As the demand for cybersecurity professionals continues to grow, Trevor Martin, chief information security officer at UW Health, is raising questions about the motivations and preparedness of job applicants in the field, The Cap Times reported May 15.

Mr. Martin told the publication that Madison, Wis.-based UW Health isn't dealing with a shortage of cybersecurity applications as many people want a career in the field due to its lucrative pay scales.

"​​We never have a shortage of (job) applicants," he said. "The question really is, are we finding the people that are applying for the right reasons?" 

Mr. Martin said when he's looking for applications, he wants them to understand the field's gravity and just how high the stakes can be. 

"Healthcare data is still one of the most valuable records out there on the dark web these days," he said.

In March, an employee's email account was hacked at UW Health. Mr. Martin stresses that these kinds of cyberattacks can have not only financial repercussions, but life-threatening consequences. 

"It's not a matter of if, it's a matter of when a major ransomware event could hit our organization and bring our (operating room) capabilities down or ICU capabilities down," he said. 

To mitigate these risks, Mr. Martin says character over technical expertise in cybersecurity recruitment is most important to him.

"It's much easier for me to hire somebody that I know I can trust, somebody that I know is going to do right by the organization and by their team, (who) I can train the rest of the way in terms of their aptitude. It's very difficult to do that the other way around," he said.  

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