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University to build cyber security skills for school students

7 August 2018
AustCyber and banking sector partnership for vital online skills
High school students will learn critical cyber security skills and awareness in a program being delivered by the University of Sydney in partnership with Australia's banking sector.

The University of Sydney has been awarded over $600,000 in federal funding to collaborate closely with ANZ, the Commonwealth Bank, NAB, Westpac, and British Telecom (BT) to develop and institute the Cyber Security Challenges for High School program.

The program teaches cyber security concepts and skills by providing classroom activities or ‘Challenges’ that cover aspects of the Year 7-10 Australian Curriculum: Digital Technologies.

Starting in October the Challenges will launch over the next year with an introduction to cyber and personal information security using relatable realistic scenarios.

The Challenges will provide the critical skills and attitudes that students need to operate safely online, while delivering Australia’s digital technologies curriculum and highlighting the fantastic career paths that exist in cyber security.
Associate Professor James Curran, Academic Director of the Australian Computing Academy

The first of four Challenges takes the imaginative approach of encouraging students to think from an attacker’s perspective, collecting the personal information shared in the social media of fictitious characters to compromise their simulated banking, email and online shopping accounts.

The Challenge will also demonstrate the importance of password strength and uniqueness through practical activities.

Associate Professor James Curran, Academic Director of the Australian Computing Academy (ACA) and one of the autors of Australian Curriculum: Digital Technologies said:

“The Challenges will provide the critical skills and attitudes that students need to operate safely online, while delivering Australia’s digital technologies curriculum and highlighting the fantastic career paths that exist in cyber security.”

“Teachers and parents concerned about cyber security can be confident that their students will be security conscious in their digital work and lives by participating in the Challenges.”

The partnership with the banking and telecommunications sectors leverages their collective expertise and experience in this crucial area of education. We are delighted to be involved in this challenge-based initiative for secondary students.
Professor Pip Pattison, Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Education)

Professor Pip Pattison, Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Education) said, “The partnership between the University’s Academy and the banking and telecommunications sectors leverages their collective expertise and experience in this crucial area of education. We are delighted to be involved in this challenge-based initiative for secondary students.” 

The Challenges complement the existing work of the ACA to deliver classroom activities and teacher professional development for the Digital Technologies curriculum as part of a $10 million federal department of education and training project being carried out in collaboration with Australian EdTech startup, Grok Learning (a spinoff from the University of Sydney).

Matching funding and support for the Cyber Security Challenges has been provided by the commonwealth government through the Australian Cyber Security Growth Network (AustCyber), as part of the Cyber Security Growth Centre initiative.

 

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