Staying safe on the internet (or cyberspace as it’s sometimes called) is something which we should all care about and have the confidence, knowledge and skills to be on top of. Safety is a feature in all aspects of Basic Digital Skills so at this end of the scale we’re helping people to understand how to protect themselves.
There’s more to it though; much, much more.
In the off-line world, some of us relied on The Tufty Club or Green Cross Code Man to help learn about crossing roads and being safe locally. We needed to continue that learning to navigate further afield without danger, or use the principles from Charley Says* to keep safe in other environments.
As individuals and organisations we need to take these lessons and apply them online. We wouldn’t usually walk down the street inviting strangers into our homes – and we shouldn’t be doing this on Skype either. We don’t hand out our bank details on business cards or leave our houses or organisations unlocked with the doors ajar, just waiting for people to come in and have a snoop around (or worse). Are we sure we’re not doing this on the internet?
Do we have the skills and knowledge to make sure that our organisations are safe and continue to remain safe in the future? Are we investing in the skills needed to be at the forefront of cyber resilience?
These are just some of the questions occupying me at the moment as I read and prepare to respond to a Proposal for a Cyber Resilience Strategy for Scotland.
Whilst these are focused on young people they are translatable for everyone.
The proposal is not a long read, and it’s important to make sure the strategy really reflects our needs. Most importantly we need to ensure that third sector organisations can stay safe in the digital world, and that the people we support are better enabled to become more cyber resilient too.
*(the eagle eyed and less easily scared than me will note there are some Public Info Films I’ve steered well clear of)