The Government has launched an ambitious Cyber Schools Programme aimed at secondary school students between the ages of 14 and 18.
The initiative, launched by the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) will provide training for up to 6,000 teenagers through extracurricular clubs and activities, along with an online game. The pilot programme is due to launch in the autumn.
The Cyber Schools Programme is part of the National Cyber Security Programme to find the online security experts of tomorrow. Students, teachers and cyber security professionals will be invited to register their interest online by the DCMS, which claims that the programme is intended “to make sure the UK is prepared for the future, and ready to tackle the growing threat posed by cyber criminals”.
“We want to help young people learn some of the skills needed to work in the cyber security profession. In the coming years, it will be your generation building, running and protecting the UK – you could be needed to help protect industries such as banking, transport and public services,” explains the DCMS website.
The training will be supported by Cyber Security Challenge UK, BT, FutureLearn and The Sans Institute.
Students between the ages of 14 and 18 will be assessed, before taking the course, with those that are accepted benefiting from connections within the cyber security sector. The DCMS is looking for at least 5,700 teenagers trained by 2021.
Commenting on the course, Matt Hancock, Minister of State for Digital, said: “Our Cyber Schools Programme aims to inspire the talent of tomorrow and give thousands of the brightest young minds the chance to learn cutting-edge cyber security skills alongside their secondary school studies. I encourage all those with the aptitude, enthusiasm and passion for a cyber security career to register for what will be a challenging and rewarding scheme.”