16:36 13 February 2017
Over 5,700 schoolchildren aged 14 and over in England will be offered cyber security lessons as part of a five-year programme that aims to strengthen UK’s cyber defences. Starting September, the students will be given up to four-hour classroom and online classes to prepare them to deal with “real world challenges”.
The programme was initiated to address a skills shortage that undermines confidence in the UK’s cyber defences. The country now considers the risk of critical UK computer system being breached as one of the top four threats to national security. Despite employing 58,000 experts on cyber security, the Public Accounts Committee has warned that it is proving difficult to recruit people with the right skills.
Digital and Culture Minister Matt Hancock said: "This forward-thinking programme will see thousands of the best and brightest young minds given the opportunity to learn cutting-edge cyber security skills alongside their secondary school studies.
"We are determined to prepare Britain for the challenges it faces now and in the future and these extra-curricular clubs will help identify and inspire future talent."
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