GIS – 12 February, 2020: Safer Internet Day 2020, under the theme Together for a Better Internet, is being marked, today, at Shri Atal Bihari Vajpayee Tower, Ebène, with the holding of a workshop to discuss the latest technology trends around the world as well as examine web-related threats that young people have to face. The aim is to lay emphasis on the use of social media as an easily exploitable attack surface.
The one-day event is organised by the Computer Emergency Response Team of Mauritius (CERT-MU), a division of the National Computer Board (NCB), which operates under the aegis of the Ministry of Technology, Communication and Innovation.
Four presentations are scheduled namely on: Behind the Scenes: Social Media as an Attack Vector; Safety at Facebook; Emerging Technologies and its Threats; and Empowering the next generation to be smarter and safer Online - A view of Estonia. Resource persons are from: Facebook, South Africa; the Estonian Information System Authority, Estonia; and the Mauritian CERT.
In his opening address, the Minister of Technology, Communication and Innovation, Mr Darsanand Balgobin, emphasised that internet safety is the responsibility of all citizens and the theme chosen to mark this year’s Safer Internet Day is in line with Government’s vision to empower all citizens to make use of technology responsively, respectfully and in a safe way.
For him, the cybersecurity landscape has drastically evolved over the years. Today, young people are very vulnerable to online dangers such as cyberbullying and sextortion so it is important for them to be aware of effective measures they need to adopt to fight such risks, he pointed out. Since a decade now, CERT-MU has sensitised more than 33 000 secondary school students as well as more than 1 500 housewives from different community centres, he added.
Moreover, the Minister announced that February 2020 has been designated as Cybersecurity month during which ways to fight cyberthreats will be explored. Today’s workshop, he stated, is the first activity to kick-start the Cybersecurity month. In addition, as part of this month, a similar workshop will be organised next week for children with disabilities coming from 70 special education needs schools, he indicated.
Finally, to end the month, a cyber security drill will be organised for IT professionals in the public sector on 27 and 28 February as it is vital to train professionals so that they keep pace with the rapid evolving cyber threats which exist in the world today, he said.
Minister Balgobin, pointed out, that according to Gartner, spending on cybersecurity is going to reach $133.7 billion in 2022. This is because, as determined by Cybersecurity ventures, across the planet, there was a cyberattack every 40 seconds in 2019 resulting in the loss of hundreds of millions of personal records. Thus, he encouraged all citizens to report cybercrimes on the Mauritian Cybercrime Online Reporting System (MAUCORS) on http://maucors.govmu.org/ MAUCORS was launched in March 2018 and, up to now, over 1 600 cases have been reported and addressed.
Safer Internet Day (SID) is an international education and awareness-raising effort celebrated in over 140 countries to promote safe and more responsible use of online technology and mobile phones, especially amongst young people. Globally, it is coordinated by the joint Insafe/INHOPE network, with the support of the European Commission, and national Safer Internet Centres across Europe.
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