The early years of a child’s life are critical to shaping their future. The more we provide children with skills that help them navigate the digital world, the better prepared they will be for this new reality. Kids can most likely still remember their first day of kindergarten or preschool. And now they may also remember their first cybersecurity lesson at school as well. Regardless of who is teaching, cyber security lessons should be embedded in all schools’ curriculum as it is an essential skill set for every student to know and understand in today’s digital and connected world.
Cyber security is one of the most popular fields to work in right now. Kids are being introduced to this field at a younger age because it is so relevant and needed in today’s world. This section will discuss what cyber security is, why kids should be learning about it, and ways to introduce these important skills.
What is Cyber Security?
Cyber security refers to the protection of data and systems from cyber-attacks.
Cyber security is about protecting data and systems from hackers, unauthorized access, and cyber-attacks. Cybersecurity is mainly broken down into two categories: prevention and response. Prevention entails taking steps to make sure an attack can’t happen in the first place (such as by installing software updates). Response entails steps for dealing with an attack after it’s detected (such as by using antivirus software).
Cybersecurity tools are used to prevent intrusion into a computer system or network through unauthorized access attempts, malicious code insertion, denial of service attacks, or other means for causing harm. Some of the most common tools that are used are firewalls, antivirus programs, anti-spyware programs, and password managers.
Why Kids Should learn Cyber Security?
Teaching children about cyber security is a lot like teaching them to avoid strangers on the street. As we learn, we need to keep on relearning new information and know what we should do when we find ourselves in a dangerous situation. We all know that the internet is an excellent place for kids to learn more about everything from world news, coding, and even how cats meow. But just as many great things come from the internet, some risks come with it as well.
Kids should be taught about cyber security from a young age because the skills they learn will help protect them as they grow older and encounter more digital risks.
The following are the use cases of teaching cyber security to children:
- Cyber security awareness can lead them to be conscious of their own devices and data, which will ultimately help them maintain a safe online environment.
- Teaching kids about cyber security will increase their awareness of how hackers work and how they exploit vulnerabilities for them to protect themselves against any possible attack.
- Once a child learns about cybersecurity, they can also teach their family members or friends who might get affected online
What to do before you teach your children about cyber security:
- Talk with your children about their internet usage and what they do online
- Take your child on a tour of popular apps, websites, and social media networks
- Teach them how to report inappropriate messages, photos, or videos that have been sent to them
- Teach children not to give personal information or location online without parental permission
- Encourage open dialogue with other parents
How to Teach Cyber Security to Kids?
Cybersecurity is a complicated topic that can be difficult to teach to kids. Not to worry, there are many ways to make the subject interesting. One way is to gamify it, making it more interactive and exciting for children. Children learn best when they are having fun, so this can be a great teaching method!
Start with the basics of internet safety then gradually get into more advanced topics
- Teach them the importance of being careful online
- Create a cybersecurity club
- Make it interactive and hands-on
- Show examples of what to do in real-life
- Keep it fun and lighthearted
Gamification is one of the most popular tools for training. It gives kids an opportunity to learn about cyber security by understanding the consequences of their actions in a game environment.
Steps for gamifying cyber security education:
1. Define what you want to teach your kids
2. Choose or create a game that will teach this topic. For example, Watch Dogs.
3. Involve the kids in the process and let them choose things like avatar, main goal, boss, etc…
4. Make sure it’s not too hard and not too easy either – make it enjoyable and safe
Cyber security is a very broad subject that can be overwhelming at first. You might feel like you don’t know where to start. The best approach is to start small, take baby steps, and keep the following in mind:
- It starts with awareness: Educate yourself and others about cyber security threats and how to fight them.
- Create a plan: Create your cyber security strategy by putting together your plan for protection, prevention, response, and recovery.
- Invest in the right tools: The right software and hardware solutions will help you monitor data activity and improve security across your business.
- Stay current: Keep up with the latest developments in cyber security research through conferences, seminars, articles, or books.
All of this advice is important to make sure that you are teaching cyber security to the next generation. The importance of cyber security education has never been more crucial than it is today. The increasing number of threats that we see daily just confirms this fact.
As the world is moving to the digital era, cyber threats such as hacking and data breach are becoming more serious. Cyber security threats are not only affecting big corporations but also personal computers and even mobile devices. One of the most important things for people to do is to educate their kids about the growing digital threats.