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Consensus Study Report


The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has overseen significant upgrades to the technology used to manage aviation operations to increase the safety and efficiency of the National Airspace System (NAS). Though necessary to regular operations, these modern computing and communications systems provide a greater attack surface for criminals, terrorists, or nation-states to exploit and thereby increase the potential for cybersecurity threats to the NAS and its constituents.

The future safety and security of air travel will rely in part on the ability of the FAA to build a workforce capable of addressing the evolving cybersecurity threat landscape. Securing the computers, networks, and data that underpin modern aviation depends in part on the FAA having enough cybersecurity professionals (capacity) with the right knowledge, skills, and abilities (capability)). It also depends on the FAA's workforce having sufficient diversity of backgrounds and experience. Such diversity is critical in analyzing cybersecurity problems and widely understood to be a "functional imperative" for effective cybersecurity programs.

At the request of Congress, the publication examines the FAA's cybersecurity workforce challenges, reviews the current strategy for meeting those challenges, and recommends ways to strengthen the FAA's cybersecurity workforce.


Suggested Citation

National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2021. Looking Ahead at the Cybersecurity Workforce at the Federal Aviation Administration. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press.

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Publication Info

112 pages |  8.5 x 11 | 

  • Paperback:  978-0-309-39150-4
  • Ebook:  978-0-309-39228-0

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