Principals’ Web Meet 2 ( Cyber Safety and Security – Part I’ ) – 22.05.2020

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Excerpts of the Principals' 2nd Web Meet on Fri 22nd May 2020, on 'Cyber Safety and Security - Part I' moderated by Dr. Sangeeta Srivastava with Panelists Shri K. K. Mookhey and Ms Sonali Patankar.

The Web meet was attended by 149 participants … Principals, Teachers and the other stake holders in school education. The focus of the Webinar was on giving insight on our safety and security in the cyber world, most vulnerable area … our digital world which today holds entire world in its hand and can crash it with as ease as a click!

Introducing the challenges faced by not just education stake holders but even a common man that how to keep our data and our money safe in digital world, Dr. Srivastava beautifully introduced both the panelists who are personalities so well known that even their identities are not limited across various social media / platforms including Google despite not being a member of that platform … such is the impact of digital outreach !
Mr. Mookhey is the founder CEO of his company from cyber security and network intelligence that operates globally from New York to Dubai to Singapore. In a few minutes he gave good guidance on how not to fall prey to cyber frauds. His tips must be listed as each suggestion is worth following to safeguard oneself –

  1. Avoid ransomware, download only those apps which are acutely needed. Even if we download, read thoroughly and sign only those terms / conditions which is needed for use of that app, eg location can be shared for OLA App but not for payment software or gaming software.
  2. Do not share any personal data like pictures, schedules, Aadhaar number, passport details etc as Apps and tools trace everything we do on digital platform. Even our chats and conversations we commonly carry out at home can be recorded if fraud is intended.
  3. Do not fall prey to digital social engineering – in short any kind of offers via SMS / WhatsApp / Mail / Call or any modes. Do not share anything and better not to open such mails/messages and delete them.
  4. Maintain basic digital hygiene like use authentic platform to download things and use licence copies. Eg Windows 10 is safer relatively.

Among other topics he also spoke on identyfying signs of Cyber bullying from WHO sites and reliable sources to protect our children from cyberbullying.
He was happily taking questions one after the other ranging from safety of status update on Whatsapp or Facebook, to using VPN Logging is not necessary unless office work is carried out, is it safe for teachers to upload self made videos, or to use zoom platform. He advised to use the upgraded versions of any app as they are modified for security.
He also advised not to be over paranoid and be scared as long as basic security is observed.
The chat box had several questions that were answered and some regarding cyber Laws will be addressed in Part 2 meet on 29 May 2020 5 pm.
Many audience wanted to share or ask info but time limit forced them to follow feedback forms and put questions there, said the moderator Dr. Srivastava.

Ms Sonali Patankar’s from ‘Responsible Netism’ said that kids safety is very much at stake when they are exposed to technology and Internet from age as younger as 4 – 5 years. She smoothly kept adding that Kids whether in student’s frame of mind or just at home in leisure time … Both ways they need alert monitoring without disturbing their privacy so they respect guardian’s intervention at right time and in right sense. There is a thin line between policing, counselling and parenting.

With increasing screen time in lock down (or otherwise also in same proportion) kids are always suffering with –

a. Screen dependency / addiction Ms Patankar suggested to strictly follow guidelines for allowing kids to share screen time. Be vocal – talk to them openly on all fronts

b. No password in phones or laptops rule to be followed by all at home etc. Parents need to be role model.

c. Tremendous disturbance in natural body clock due to very late nights and no discipline.
This also affects mental health and causes poor academics.

d. Social isolation syndrome

It causes fear of missing out (FOMO) on being not able to access social media platforms. As a result kids keen on seeking attention play tiny to big level pranks with colleagues and even teachers which must be legitimately reprimanded right from start. It can cause trauma to teachers where they need immediate counselling from peer and control the damages.

e. Ms Patankar very well guided about cyber bullying, body shaming etc that has become quite common among children.
This is a vast topic in nutshell that as per guidelines every bit of crime is punishable (like meeting bombardment or hacking neighbours wifi password to boast peer kids)
She suggested to read and follow norms from UNICEF, NCERT, NCPCR for DOS DONTS & NGOS for help in distress and childlines etc. Plenty of guidelines and vast support of 3000 plus network of child psychologists on cyber bullying are available that just needs a grab.

The Moderator Dr. Srivastava tried to take up few questions in the last 15 minutes from audience to both panelists randomly.
All the questions were answered satisfactorily.
At the end both the guest – speakers were asked for their final words as take away of the session. Mookhey-cautioning each one to be vigilant in sharing every peice of data or better not to share and avoid excess usage of digital mode. Sonali- Restrict screen time of not only children but adults too in family to not more than 6 to 7 hrs even though its for an educational purpose.

New questions arise when earlier ones are cleared and as a result many doubts were left unattended. The onus is now on audience to ready the question in crisp and ask in advance through whatsapp or mail so that speakers can shed light on distinct queries more specifically, requested Dr. Srivastava. A happy ending to enriching session with curious eyes looking forward to MAY 29 5 pm session … CYBER SECURITY AND SAFETY-Part 2
On Fri, 29th May 2020 at 5 pm


Regards !
Dr. Sangeeta Srivastava
sangeeta2764@gmail.com

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