It’s only a few weeks ago when at the Cyber Security Week much attention was given to the importance of introducing the next generation to cybersecurity as early as possible. One organisation that was paying attention to this call for actions is Cybersprint. They took the opportunity of the annual Autumn Holiday to organise an event geared towards ethical hacking. On 16 October 2017, 39 high school students were introduced to ethical hacking at the ‘Hackend de Herfst in’ event organised by Cybersprint.
The goal of the course was to introduce 12 to 16 year olds to the concept of ethical hacking and showing them some of the available possibilities and methods. How to protect yourself against cyber risks or unintentionally straying from the right path online. For example on the Darkweb. The students were taught how they could hack an organisation in a responsible way, how to report bugs, but also how to deal with responsible disclosure policies and other ‘rules’ that come with ethical hacking. Together this is a short and complete introduction to the fundamentals of ethical hacking.
Educating future experts
Students could join the session if they were familiar with or had a some understanding of Information Technology (IT) and affinity with computers and coding. Initiatives like this are really important if we want to educate the workforce of tomorrow today. In most schools attention for this kind of topic is very limited, if not absent. Despite there being plentiful job opportunities. Companies are having a hard time to fill their cyber vacancies and it is through initiatives like this that an interest for cybersecurity as a career might be sparked. Under the supervision of professional hackers from Cybersprint the group worked on assignments provided by Certified Secure to learn several hacking techniques.
Pieter Jansen, CEO of Cybersprint, who lectured and guided the group says “It’s nice to see youngsters going at it with so much enthusiasm. The students were very interested and came up with some profound questions. We hope that we taught the attendants on the ethical aspects of hacking and hope that they continue their hacking efforts in an ethical way and use their skills for good.”
The local news channel also visited to make an item (in Dutch), which you can find here.