Each year Safer Internet Day looks to promote safe and positive use of digital and technology for children and young people and to inspire a national conversation.
In the cyber security team in the MoJ, we want to inspire this conversation across the ministry and create a positive security culture for civil servants, our suppliers and the people we serve. I have found that people are sometimes reluctant to have these conversations for fear of revealing a mistake they have made and getting told off. Jon Lawrence, our Chief Information Security Officer, talks about us being the friendliest cyber security team in government. We are not just friendly as we are lovely people (we are but we do not like to brag). Being supportive, understanding and open allows us to support people to make better choices online and to get help when things go wrong.
Becoming completely safe online is an impossible task. We are only human and it is easy to get caught out by accident even when you try your best to be secure. Inspired by the Disney movie, Frozen 2 (who knew Princess Anna was a cyber security icon) we support users ‘to do the next right thing’. If you are worried about something online, let someone know and get the support you need. If you don’t have multi-factor authentication set up on your online accounts, then do it now. Start to keep your work and passwords separately, and try setting up some good passwords on your accounts. There is some brilliant advice out there from the NCSC and others to help you. Little things can make a difference.
Most of all as a team we encourage people to be more mindful and to have conversations in their team about online safety. Here are some good things to think about:
- Am I happy for what I am saying online to be in the public domain?
- Do I need to share all the information I am sharing or can I be a bit more selective? For example, what’s in the background of this picture I’m tweeting? Am I wearing my security pass in that photo I put online?
- Do I really know who I am talking to in online and email conversations?
- Am I thinking about who might be listening in or looking over my shoulder?
So today I’d encourage you to talk about cyber security, to take a few quick steps to be more secure online and even perhaps make friends with a security aficionado. There is a lot of help out there if you go looking for it (I am sure I learned that from Disney too).