Vincennes University says new curriculum being offered this fall to high school students enrolled in its dual credit programs will help enhance cyber security in Indiana. The Certified Secure Computer User course aims to give students the skills needed to protect their information assets online.

The curriculum will be offered within VU's Introduction to Computer Concepts credit course. Jaci Lee Lederman, chair of the VU Department of Information Technology, is helping lead the initiative and says providing the course and certification to high school students will expedite the cyber secure education needed by the state's future workforce. 

"Cyber secure work habits can start in high-school,” Lederman said in a news release. "After piloting the CSCU course on the VU campus, I see merit in experienced IT students and professionals taking the course. The course is a resource that can help IT students and professionals understand what everyday computer users need to know. In the effort to configure the next best system to thwart cyber crime, organizations might overlook educating end users about secure computing."

The course will inform students about identity theft, fraud, phishing scams, viruses, and email hoaxes, among other topics. Students will have the opportunity to become CSCU certified after completing the course.

Lederman says the course will highlight the actions every computer uses takes that could put them at risk of losing sensitive data in a cyber attack

"As an IT professional, I understand that protecting an organization's infrastructure is a top priority of any Information Technology Department," she said. "However, setting up systems to protect an organization's digital assets is only one part of the effort. The human factor should not be ignored. The everyday computer user must be educated on cyber security in order to contribute to the organization's security efforts."