Cyber Security Skills Development Programme for Rural SMMEs
Minimal Cyber Security Skills and knowledge in SMMEs limits access to entrepreneurial opportunities and business growth.
Proposed Solution – Cyber M8
In our efforts to create awareness of the cyber security amongst the youth, Biz M8 Communications proposes a 6-month Cyber Security Skills Development Programme by the name of Cyber M8 starting from the International Cyber Security Month (October).
Cyber M8 is designed by Biz M8 Communications and partners aimed at addressing the minimal cyber security knowledge and explore the best practices amongst youth by empowering them with relevant cyber security skills. Cyber M8 features a series of several interventions which further seeks to expose participants to opportunities within cyber security and ICT industry at large.
Principal to the implementation of this programme is the mass public awareness and participation within cyber security and ICT sector at large. This will be done in a form of capacity building workshops within one province in South African rural and township communities. The key objectives of the workshops are to:
- Increase awareness on cyber security amongst the youth;
- Conscientise and expose out-of-school youth to employment opportunities within the cyber security sector; and
- Capacitate SMMEs with relevant skills within the cyber security to participate meaningfully in the local economic growth.
Structure, Content and Methodology
The challenge with any broad-based entrepreneurship programme is finding an effective vehicle that can deliver quality content to many beneficiaries at an affordable cost. We will make use of workshops and toolkits. A toolkit will be developed and distributed to all participants of the programme. It will be a practical step-by-step guide for entrepreneurs.
Content for Cyber M8 is custom-made by industry experts and various partners from both public and private sectors to the highest standards. Cyber M8 comprises of three phases including a supporting phase through-out the duration of the programme which include:
- Cyber Security Skills Assessments (Pre-and-Post)
- Stakeholder Engagement
- Capacity Building Workshops
- Progress Check Workshops
- Cyber Security Youth Summit
- On-going Online Mentorship Programme (supporting phase)
The programme will liaise with other SMME development agencies, for purposes of recruiting participants who are already part of entrepreneurship programmes to build up on skills gained from elsewhere, as a systemic approach this programme employs.
To select the right cohort of entrepreneurs who will be placed within the programme, an ICT Skills pre-audit will be conducted on every entrepreneur. This is to ensure that the programme serves the right target audience – entrepreneurs with minimal digital skills. Post the programme, another digital skills audit will be conducted to the impact of the programme.
The third phase after, the progress check workshop, entails a showcase and expo which marks the closing of the project, where the participants will compete for the ‘best innovative marketing strategy’ with a price to fund that idea or receive a scholarship.