Inspired parents have praised Nottinghamshire Police after picking up top tips in virtual cyber crime workshops originally designed for their children.
The force’s cyber crime team gained positive feedback from youngsters and teachers on their virtual home-learning session – and decided to take the opportunity to re-package it slightly to reach their parents too.
Nottinghamshire Police officers were invited by Dalestorth Primary School to hold the special engagement event after a successful online campaign.
Parent Louisa Fryatt, from Sutton-in-Ashfield, said she learnt a lot from the force's online workshop. She said: It's crucial that parents and the older generations aren't left behind. You've got to try your best to keep up with the times and workshops like these are a real help.
"I like to think of myself quite tech-savvy, but I learnt a lot more than I thought I would. I thought it was really beneficial learning about the benefit of parental controls and learning about password protection.
"It was a really impressive presentation and really easy to listen to and take in all the information."
Meanwhile parent Christopher Cudworth called the workshop a real eye-opener into the dangers of being online.
He added: “The competition was really beneficial. In the current climate we've got five of us working at home and we all have access to internet and we take it for granted. Some of the things I learnt were very beneficial.
“I think the reality of coming down to basics of generated passwords was really good. I now appreciate how quickly your data could be captured, it was certainty an eye-opener.
“My daughter has done a rap for the schools competition. It was a lot of fun and a great way to engage with youngsters."
Nottinghamshire Police and Siddiqui Education have worked in partnership to create lesson plans and a special competition to teach children across the county.
Teachers at the school in Sutton-in-Ashfield were inspired by the content and, in conjunction with Nottinghamshire Police’s cyber crime team, organised a session on Safer Internet Day (9 February) to teach parents all about cyber crime.
Joseph Lamb, a computing teacher from the school, said: “It is imperative that our children and parents are aware of cyber crime as they are spending more time on the internet than ever before.
“Through our curriculum, we teach our children from a very early age to check what they are viewing online is real, to not share their personal information online and to tell a trusted adult if they are unsure about something online.
“As a school, we thought that Safer Internet Day would be a perfect opportunity to make our parents aware of how they can protect themselves and their children against cyber crime."
The workshop gave parents meaningful strategies to prevent those becoming victims of online crime and crucially gave them information about how they can protect their children.
They learnt how to create a secure password, to add parental controls to their home wi-fi and how to keep their data secure.
Mr Lamb added: “In partnership with the force's cyber crime unit, we hosted the workshop was a huge success and our parents felt that they had a better understanding of cyber crime.
“The meeting has made our parents reflect on the information that is available on both theirs and their children’s social media accounts and how this is accessible to criminals. I personally know because of the meeting many families have tightened their privacy settings on theirs and their children’s social media accounts.
“As a school, we know that the workshop has given our parents the necessary information and strategies to prevent them from becoming a victim of cybercrime. We would like to personally thank Nottinghamshire Police for supporting our school and our community with this meaningful workshop.”
The cyber crime competition is targetted to pupils from year five, six, seven and eight to
create a piece of work highlighting key cyber protect advice.
The force is asking students to design and create a poster, rap, video or podcast to educate their peers on how to protect themselves and each other from cyber crime.
So far the force has had over 40 schools across Nottinghamshire confirm their participation and local officers are encouraging others to sign-up before the deadline for entries arrives.
Kirsty Jackson, cyber protect and prevent officer, ran the virtual workshop. She said: “It was great to hear the lesson plans had been received well within Dalestorth Primary School and other schools involved.
"Mr Lamb had informed me that students at his school had lots of fun working through the lessons learning about the Computer Misuse Act to help them make the right ‘cyber choices’ and how to protect themselves from cyber crime.
"This gave the opportunity to ask for support around a parent session that he wanted deliver.
“Sharing our lesson plans and competition with schools has helped us gain some great relationships within local schools which will help our team support schools further in the future.
“I was excited to involved with the parent workshop with Mr Lamb to share our online Protect advice and details around our Cyber Choices programme.
"I’m really pleased this session has helped parents take actions which will positively influence their online awareness and safety in the future.
“Now the competition is drawing to close I can see the positive impact this is already making within the school community and with the children’s understanding around this important area of education.
"I’m so excited to judge the competition next week and start handing out the fantastic prizes available.”
All submissions for the competition must be received by Monday (22 February 2021).
Find out more how you can get involved and download the lesson plans here: https://www.nottinghamshire.police.uk/besafeonline
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