By Brian Robinson
October 10, 2007
The Homeland Security Department recently published a draft  of a
framework of knowledge and skills it believes the United States needs to
Development of the IT Security Essential Body of Knowledge (EBK) began
in 2003, when the DHS National Cyber Security Division (NCSD) began
working with the Defense Department, academia and private industry to
examine workforce IT certifications and what would be needed to advance
Starting with the DODs Information Assurance Skill Standards document,
which had goals considered close to those for the national workforce,
the NCSD development team isolated what it considered the core IT
It then compared those with other domain-based IT security models to
come up with a list of 14 key competencies to cover all public and
private security roles and functions.
The EBK contains the key terms and concepts from all of those
competencies that NCSD officials feel individuals in at least some IT
security roles should know.
The EBK is not an additional set of guidelines that DHS believes
organizations should follow, said Greg Garcia, DHS assistant secretary
for cybersecurity and communications, in comments included with the
recent Federal Register announcement of the EBK draft . It is also
not intended to represent a directive from DHS, he said.
The intent is for the document it to help advance the IT security
training and certification landscape as we strive to ensure that we have
the most qualified and appropriately trained IT security workforce
possible, he said.
The public can comment on EBK through the Federal Register notice. Those
comments will build on initial reviews by working groups and role-based
focus groups prior to the documents final publication.
The deadline for those comments is Dec. 7.
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