Students are challenged to think like a hacker in a new online program called Cyber Skills Aotearoa.
Naenae College in Lower Hutt was the first school to try out the initiative created by Australia-based Grok Academy, with the first 45-minute online challenge running until November 11.
“These things have never been taught before and a lot of our parents don’t know a lot of things, so I think it’s a really good step in the right direction,” Naenae College student Arie Joe told 1News.
Learning resources such as flashcards that ask students to choose what content to post on social media are also provided.
The goal is to teach students how to protect their privacy and identify scams and hackers on the Internet.
“It certainly taught you how easy it is for scammers to gain access to your accounts,” said Blessing Tafili, another student.
The program is bilingual, with English and te reo Māori.
Next year, several other challenges will be organized for the schools that register.
Netsafe data shows that in the year to June, 17% of online harm reports came from people under the age of 21.
The government, ASB, BNZ and Amazon Web Services are funding the program.
“It’s really important for our students to have these skills from an early age, they spend a lot of time online and I guess as a side benefit we want them to think about careers in cybersecurity,” said said Digital Economy Minister David. said Clark.
Program creator James Curran hopes students will take home advice to help educate their whānau, who he says are very worried about their child’s online presence but are often at fault.
“By doing things like sharing a photo of an 18th birthday or a photo outside of school, you’re actually giving information to your social network and if you set your privacy settings to public, you’re basically just to broadcast the date of your child’s birth,” Curran said.