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News

On-line classroom security forum launched

ISC Squared : 05 October, 2009  (Company News)
A US wide volunteer program has been started by ISC Squared for security professionals to offer their experience in teaching cyber safety across American classrooms
(ISC)2 has launched its Safe and Secure Online volunteer program in the US, offering top cyber security professionals from business and government to teach cyber safety in classrooms nationwide.

Upon request, (ISC)2 member volunteers will deliver Safe and Secure Online, an interactive presentation designed for children ages 11-14, to teach them how to protect themselves in an increasingly cyber-connected world, tackling such concerns as social networking, cyberbullying, viral emails, spam, identity theft and more. The program addresses the gap in security advice that exists in children's safety outreach efforts, using compelling materials for the classroom developed by former school teachers and presented by certified information security professionals.

"As the largest body of information security professionals in the world, it's (ISC)2's mission to go beyond certifying security professionals and introduce responsible computing to everyday computer users," said Hord Tipton, CISSP-ISSEP, CAP, CISA, executive director of (ISC)2. "We want to start with those at highest risk - children, many of whom have a firm grasp of how technology works but lack the savvy to know when they're putting themselves in jeopardy or when someone is trying to take advantage of them. Safe and Secure Online seeks to empower kids to safely navigate the Internet and mobile devices."

While there are several existing programs that address the cyber safety of the nation's youth, Safe and Secure Online engages certified experts and speaks to the children directly as well as teachers, school administrators and parents. To participate in the Safe and Secure Online program, volunteers must be (ISC)2-certified members in good standing, which includes adherence to (ISC)2's strict Code of Ethics. Volunteers are provided with supporting materials, such as a video that highlights practical advice on effectively communicating with children and addresses child protection issues for adults working with school children. Volunteers can earn continuing professional education (CPE) credits toward their certification for participating. They will earn 10 CPEs for their first two sessions and one CPE for each session thereafter.

The Safe and Secure Online presentation was assembled by (ISC)2 with support from Childnet International, a charity that aims to make the Internet a safe place for children, and was first introduced to a pool of (ISC)2-certified volunteers in the United Kingdom (UK) in 2006. In 2007, (ISC)² then joined forces with the Hong Kong Office of the Government Chief Information Officer (OGCIO) and Hong Kong Police to develop materials in Chinese and expanded the program to volunteers Hong Kong. A U.S. pilot program ran in Washington State for several months earlier this year before being expanded nationwide to coincide with the start of the 2009-2010 school year and the sixth annual National Cyber Security Awareness Month in October. (ISC)²'s Safe and Secure Online volunteers have reached nearly 20,000 children worldwide.

"When I first learned that (ISC)2 began to undertake this initiative in the US, I was eager to become involved," said David Melnick, CISSP, principal in Security & Privacy Services, Deloitte LLP; (ISC)2 board member and Safe and Secure Online volunteer. "As a principal in security and privacy services at Deloitte and as a father of two girls, I recognize the importance of educating end-users about the ubiquitous dangers faced in an online world. I am pleased to support Safe and Secure Online and do whatever possible to make sure that children and others are being informed on a widespread level."

A wide range of respected organizations have expressed their support for Safe and Secure Online, including Microsoft, the National Cyber Security Alliance (NCSA) and the Internet Keep Safe Coalition (iKeepSafe). Microsoft is sending several of their (ISC)2-certified security professionals through the process to become volunteers. Statements from supporting organizations include:

"Microsoft is a strong advocate of community programs that educate the public about technology and its uses, and we commend (ISC)2 for shining a bright light on the issue of online child safety. We are pleased that many Microsoft employees who are CISSP-certified are volunteering their time to participate in the Safe and Secure Online program to make a difference in children's lives."

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