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Thursday, 13 December 2018 11:11

Optus takes kids on a cyber security journey at La Trobe

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Optus takes kids on a cyber security journey at La Trobe Pixabay

Students from grades five to eight participated in a number of workshops on cyber bullying. staying safe online and cyber security as part of a Digital Smarts Day organised by Singtel Optus on Wednesday.

The students, from across Melbourne, were taken to La Trobe University, for the free interactive program which is meant to help them lean how to be safe, responsible and thrive in the digital world.

Optus sustainability director Helen Maisano said: “Digital Smarts Day is developed from the Optus Digital Thumbprint program. We partner with Kids Helpline for primary school students and we also deliver Digital Thumbprint for secondary school students. Our aim through these free, interactive in-school programs is to support young Australians with the knowledge and practical advice for a positive online experience.”

The Digital Thumbprint program empowers young people to stay safe online and through it more than 100,000 students have learned to be safer and smarter online.

“With the demand for cyber skills and cyber jobs growing rapidly, we placed a strong focus on cyber security this year, expanding Digital Smarts Day by partnering with La Trobe University’s Cyber Faculty and including content from the Optus Cyber Security Experience powered by Life Journey. This cross-sector collaboration means that students can learn, at a young age, the skills and qualities that will help them thrive in the digital world," Maisano added.

optus digital smarts

Optus' Alison Polyik, students from Macleod College, Optus cyber security expert Stewart Hayes and Dr Alex Ng, lecturer in cyber security at La Trobe University.

“Students explored careers with Optus cyber security professionals and heard first-hand from students undertaking La Trobe University’s under and post graduate courses in cyber security.

“While the digital world presents significant issues such as cyber bullying, it also provides countless benefits and opportunities. Events such as Digital Smarts Day and our ongoing programs within primary and secondary schools provide young people with practical strategies to navigate risk and important insights to prepare for the cyber jobs of tomorrow."

La Trobe University vice-chancellor Professor John Dewar said the Digital Smarts Day program was aligned with La Trobe’s expertise in cyber security research and teaching.

“We are delighted to partner with Optus on this important program which will not only help young people become responsible digital citizens but will also open their eyes to the wealth of exciting future job opportunities in the rapidly evolving field of cyber security,” he said.

“Students who choose to study one of La Trobe’s own wide-ranging cyber security degrees learn from research experts at the top of their game in disciplines spanning cyber intelligence, information technology, cyber-crime and cyber law – all areas in demand from employers in Australia and across the world.”


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Sam Varghese

Sam Varghese has been writing for iTWire since 2006, a year after the site came into existence. For nearly a decade thereafter, he wrote mostly about free and open source software, based on his own use of this genre of software. Since May 2016, he has been writing across many areas of technology. He has been a journalist for nearly 40 years in India (Indian Express and Deccan Herald), the UAE (Khaleej Times) and Australia (Daily Commercial News (now defunct) and The Age). His personal blog is titled Irregular Expression.

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