The National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC), a part of GCHQ, announced that its free CyberFirst courses are now open for registration to introduce Scottish students with a passion for technology to the fascinating and fast-paced world of cyber security.

First launched in 2016, this range of courses gives students aged 14-17 in Scotland, the opportunity to explore their passion for tech. The three courses guiding pupils step by step through their understanding of the cyber security industry are: CyberFirst Defenders, CyberFirst Futures and finally CyberFirst Advanced. All courses are free, and the majority are provided in ten, half-day online sessions.

CyberFirst Defenders, which is open to students currently in S4, offers a valuable introduction to building and protecting small networks and personal devices. It increases students’ awareness of cyber security, whilst equipping them with a set of relevant practical skills they can apply in their own lives.

CyberFirst Futures is aimed at students in S5 and explores advanced cyber security threats and ways to protect against them. The course offers an insight into not just the method but the motivation behind cyber threats.

And finally, the CyberFirst Advanced course for students in S6 hones the skills and behaviours needed to enter the cyber security or tech-based workplace.

Each course is designed to inspire and encourage students from all backgrounds to explore and consider careers in cyber security, offering young people with potential the support, skills, experience and exposure needed to be the future first line of defence in our CyberFirst world.

“I was interested in cyber security and thought this would be a good way of learning more, developing new skills and finding out if it’s something I would like to pursue further. The course made me think more widely about the range of cybersecurity jobs available. I would say to anyone thinking about doing a CyberFirst course to just go for it – I knew very little about computer systems or the technical side of things but was taught all these amazing new things. It was interesting, enjoyable and fun!”

A 17-year-old, former CyberFirst student Anwen, from Argyll & Bute

“CyberFirst courses offer pupils a fantastic opportunity to pursue their passion for technology, whilst learning how to keep themselves and others safe online. I’m delighted we are offering more teenagers the chance to develop new skills, which I hope will inspire them to consider a future in the exciting field of cyber security.”

Chris Ensor, NCSC Deputy Director for Cyber Growth

To find out more and to book a place please visit The Smallpeice Trust website for further information.

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