Internet safety highlighted during Inaugural CyberPatriot Workshop

May 18, 2016

By Tracie R. Dean, ARL Public Affairs

ADELPHI, Md. (April 4, 2016) -- As part of an ongoing effort to inspire students to explore cybersecurity and other science, technology, engineering and mathematics-related activities and disciplines critical to our nation's future, Army engineers from the U.S. Army Research Laboratory recently conducted a cybersecurity workshop.

The workshop encourages students to apply cyber ethics principles in their online interactions and helps students understand the importance of cybersecurity in their everyday lives. Defensive cyber skills and cyber awareness are promoted and workshop activities are designed to integrate cybersecurity into already developed STEM curricula.

Maj. Michael Lewis of the U.S. Army Reserve Cyber Operations Group led the inaugural workshop and highlighted some of the cyber and STEM related activities and discussions.

"Students were educated in online safety, responsible internet behavior," Lewis said. "We discussed several possible online scenarios where students were responsible for evaluating, discussing and solving unethical situations."

Activities focused on cybersecurity, ethics, online safety, cyber-bullying and the legal ramifications of sharing inappropriate images. Students from Buck Lodge Middle School, located in Prince Georges County, Maryland, participated in hands-on activities focused on cybersecurity and STEM topics that included a robotics and cybersecurity challenge.

The collaboration was a part of ARL's STEM Outreach Education Program that develops partnerships and promotes extensive collaboration between ARL's researchers, educators and students at local elementary, middle and high schools.

As the workshop concluded, students discussed the tenants of good Internet usage, which includes email security, social media conduct and sharing personal identifiable information.

When asked what he thought would be the most important takeaway for students and their parents, Lewis emphasized the importance of social responsibility on the internet.

"In our current climate where information can be accessed and shared instantly, students need to understand they are responsible for their actions and for the information sent from their cell phones and computers," Lewis said. The next workshop will be in May at the Adelphi Laboratory Center.

The U.S. Army Research Laboratory is part of the U.S. Army Research, Development and Engineering Command, which has the mission to ensure decisive overmatch for unified land operations to empower the Army, the joint warfighter and our nation. RDECOM is a major subordinate command of the U.S. Army Materiel Command.

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Last Update / Reviewed: May 18, 2016