We won! Scottish Cyber Awards 2021

On Thursday 18th November, we were excited to attend the Scottish Cyber Awards at the Sheraton Hotel in Edinburgh. Hosted by the SBRC (Scottish Business Resilience Centre), the awards were attended by colleagues in the public, private and charity sectors. We came together to celebrate innovation and achievement in cyber security.

We were thrilled to win the Diversity Champion award and celebrate with partners that have supported our cyber resilience projects, including SBRC, Cyber Scotland, National Cyber Security Centre and the Open University in Scotland. We were shortlisted in the Diversity Champion category alongside Dresscode/Turing Testers and MASCOTS. 

The award recognises our work in the area of digital skills and cyber resilience, particularly how we make cyber security learning accessible. Across our 8 community learning projects, we embed digital skills learning that is accessible for disabled people that may be experiencing extra barriers to cyber security.

In 2020-21, we have reached hundreds of people with our cyber projects, including online safety webinars during the pandemic about topics like recognising scams or using password managers. This advice was adapted to be accessible and meet the needs of the people we work with. For example, we discussed techniques for creating and remembering passwords that people with dyslexia might find especially useful.

Our free OpenLearnCreate course ‘Everyday computer skills: a beginner’s guide to computers, tablets, mobile phones and accessibility’ was also recognised by the award. The course was designed with and for disabled learners, in partnership with The Open University in Scotland.

Our work in this area has not stopped! We’re currently running the Alternative Formats project, commissioning online security information in accessible formats, including British Sign Language, community languages and Easy Read.

As part of this project, we’re offering free Training for Trainers for organisations working with people with low IT confidence/skills. Please get in touch with us by email at sadam@lead.org.uk if you’d be interested in us running a session for your organisation.

Our CEO, Emma Whitelock, who accepted the award on stage, says:

‘We are incredibly proud to win this amazing Award, kindly sponsored by Sapphire. We were honoured to be finalists in this category amongst esteemed partners who have been doing great work under very difficult circumstances during the pandemic.

We all need to be talking about cyber security. Too many people still don’t know how to safe and secure online. Our team has been working very hard to create cyber security messages in partnership with the Scottish Government and the National Cyber Security Centre. When we make it easy to understand why and how, people gain confidence and adopt more secure behaviours.’