I recently read an article, which got me thinking about security (which naturally, is always the first thing that comes to mind).
Mashable.com recently wrote an article, ‘Bleak’ – study finds young people have trouble with fake news despite digital fluency reporting about ‘fake’ news and how social media and the flood of any desired information at our fingertips are making it hard for people to identify and read unbiased, credible and informative news. The Mashable article reviewed a Stanford study which found that middle schoolers to college students have a hard time identify ‘real’ news and largely failed at their respective age appropriate news literacy.
What got me thinking is if this age group failed at identify creditable news sources, then what is stopping them from failing to identifying fake websites, phishing emails, malicious phone calls, or other fraudulent and pernicious activity on their devices?
With an age group that has been dubbed as ‘the web savviest generation’, how do we change their behavior to better protect themselves from deceivingly real fake news but also, in a related topic protect their personal data?
Now, I do not have an answer for you but maybe a suggestion…
Training technology users (almost everyone) like organization’s onboard employees. Every organization has (or should) have an onboarding process for all new employees of the do’s and don’ts of the organization’s company policies including best practices for internet browsing, identifying malicious emails, what information to share and not to share. But for those outside of the professional realm or too young to have a job, when is a good time to intervene? And who is responsible for enlightening these said individuals?
What if children TV shows like Sesame Street, Mickey Mouse’s Clubhouse, Barney, etc. taught children their ABCs, 123s and basic personal information data protection? Or what to share and not to share? What if the public education system included cyber security best practices in all of their computer classes in grade school?
Again, I don’t have an answer to those questions, but I do know if we do not take the time to incorporate security best practices in our personal and professional lives, cyber security incidents and breaches will become more frequent and more damaging.