Autistic People Can Solve Our Cybersecurity Crisis

Kevin Pelphrey: “Alan Turing was the mastermind whose role in cracking the Nazi Enigma code helped the Allies win World War II. He built a machine to do the calculations necessary to decipher enemy messages and today is hailed as the father of the computer and artificial intelligence. He’s also widely believed to have been autistic.”

“While Turing’s renown has arguably never been higher, today we are failing to recognize the potential in millions of other talented minds all around us. Like Turing, many of them are also capable of exceptional technological expertise that can help to safeguard our nation.”

“The common prejudice is that people with ASD have limited skills and are difficult to work with. To the extent that’s true, it’s a measure of our failure as a society. Almost half of those diagnosed with ASD are of average or above-average intellectual ability… more than three-quarters of cognitively able individuals with autism have aptitudes and interests that make them well suited to cybersecurity careers. These include being very analytical and detail-oriented as well as honest and respectful of rules.”

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