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Exploring the World of Cybersecurity: Year 9 Students Engage in a Cyber Investigation Workshop

In an ever-evolving digital landscape, understanding cybersecurity is becoming increasingly crucial. To equip students with the necessary skills and knowledge, our Year 9 cohort recently participated in an immersive Cyber Investigation workshop conducted by the esteemed National Cyber Security Centre (Part of GCHQ).

Held within the confines of our school premises, the workshop aimed to demystify the complexities of cybersecurity while fostering a sense of responsibility and awareness amongst the students. Led by seasoned experts from the NCSC, the sessions delved into various aspects of cyber threats, protective measures, and the ethical considerations surrounding cybersecurity.

Throughout the workshop, students were engaged in hands-on activities and simulations, offering them a glimpse into the real-world scenarios encountered by cybersecurity professionals. From decoding encrypted messages to identifying phishing attempts, each exercise was meticulously designed to enhance the students' problem-solving skills and critical thinking abilities.

We happily share some student testimonials from those who took part in this engaging workshop:


We were based in G15 throughout the day and were given booklets, a username and a password for the activities we were going to do on the computers either in school or given to us by the Leaders. There were 4 main topics covered, those being Digital Forensics, Cryptography, Penetration Testing and Open Source Intelligence. The activities were online, on a specific website which contained quite an intriguing story based on a video games company and their game being leaked, which we found quite enthralling, to say the least.
We covered a range of things, from servers and encryption, to high-level hacking and learning about things like types of cyber crime.
There were also discussions on the wide variety of career paths and the many jobs available in those sectors, such as a forensic computer analyst or even a cryptographer. There was also the fact that many people in the UK don’t have an extensive knowledge of the minute details of cybersecurity and how it functions, and how there was a greater need of people in the Cybersecurity space, as more often than not many crimes occur online.
All in all, we thoroughly enjoyed ourselves - the experience was very knowledgeable and taught us many things that hadn’t been shown before in much greater detail. It also allowed us to think analytically about many real-life problems, and understand how the skills are transferrable to just about anything.



When I found out that I was going to be doing a workshop with the National Cyber Security Centre for the day, at first, I was a little confused because I hadn’t really heard of cybersecurity or been interested in pursuing a career in the computing field before today and before this workshop. Computing had never really been an option for the future or something I’d really thought about before, but I’m so glad that I did this session today. It was so interesting finding out about different specialisations within cybersecurity and getting to work hands-on with the software used for investigations! During the day, we worked through a series of ‘Labs’—short collections of activities enabling us to find the culprit we were looking for, as well as more information. We looked at digital forensics, cryptography, penetration testing, and open-source intelligence to try to help us solve the challenges we’d been given. The team was so helpful and passionate about what they did; it really made the day so much more interesting, and I learned some really valuable skills that I hope to take along with me in the future if I do end up pursuing something to do with cybersecurity!