Pupils in Years 7, 8 and 9 are being challenged to develop an innovative crime prevention resource to help keep each other safe online.

In the fight against these issues, West Yorkshire Police and the county’s Police and Crime Commissioner have joined forces to run a schools cyber crime competition for the third year.

Young people taking part are challenged to form a team and design a resource to help keep people safe online. It can take any form such as a website, leaflet, phone app or even a rap.

Teams have until 27 March to design, test and launch their resources.

Entries need to be submitted in the form of a 3 minute YouTube video. These videos will then be shortlisted with six groups going through to an exciting X-Factor style grand-final event at West Yorkshire Police’s Training Centre in Carr Gate Wakefield on 14 May 2020.

The overall winner of the competition will take home a £50 voucher for their school, a prestigious trophy, a tour of West Yorkshire Police’s Specialist Operations Site (which includes the Mounted Section, Dog Section and Helicopter) and a cyber safety input from a member of the West Yorkshire Police Cyber Crime Team.

Mark Burns-Williamson, West Yorkshire’s Police and Crime Commissioner (PCC) said: “Tackling cyber crime is a key focus in my Police and Crime Plan and young people have a crucial role in helping us to better understand and tackle the issues associated with it.

“We are really keen for as many schools as possible to embrace this competition and join the fight against cyber criminals. I would encourage parents, teachers and of course young people themselves to ask their schools to get involved.”

Detective Inspector Dan Tillett of the West Yorkshire Police Cyber Crime Team, said: “Whilst cyber crime can take many guises and range from the targeting of individuals to economic impact on a global scale, children and young adults are the first line of defence, promoting digital hygiene in the home and utilising cyber protection techniques that thwart the attempts of cyber criminals. Education and engagement play a key role in ensuring that children grasp the opportunities presented through technology and embrace them securing positive advancements for all.”

The competition has been commended by the UK Safer Internet Centre, a partnership of three leading organisations (Childnet International, Internet Watch Foundation and SWGfL), who promote the safe and responsible use of technology for young people.

A spokesperson for the UK Safer Internet Centre, said: “It is brilliant to see West Yorkshire Police and the Police and Crime Commissioner taking online safety so seriously. This is a great opportunity for young people to improve their understanding of online safety in a fun and rewarding way. This kind of positive approach to staying safe online is exactly what we need more of.”

To find out more about the competition, including how to take part visit www.westyorkshire.police.uk/cyber-contest

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